Bernie Taupin Is A Godawful Lyricist Whose Lyrics Sound Amazing Coming Out Of Elton John's Mouth — ILM ARTIST POLL #41: ELTON JOHN

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http://02varvara.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/elton-john-e1269756386888.jpg
"Heh, you hear that, Bernie?"

Thanks to fact checking cuz for that pullquote in the title, and thanks for sending in your ballots! We got 32 in the end; enough to roll out a Top 50 and have somewhat meaningful side poll results. First up? Worst/Most-Hated Songs...

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:26 (three years ago) Permalink

08. "Wrap Her Up" (1985) [20 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKWsg_VrzbA

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:30 (three years ago) Permalink

For some reason, it didn't count the # of votes when I was tabulating the side polls, so all I've got are points totals. Sorry.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:31 (three years ago) Permalink

terrible thread title

my father will guide me up the stairs to bed (anagram), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:32 (three years ago) Permalink

the joke's on you, buddy

Euler, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:33 (three years ago) Permalink

"Wrap Her Up" is terrible but not really stand-out-terrible for EJ imo, more like run of the mill dreadful

Euler, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:34 (three years ago) Permalink

07. "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" (1974) [23 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ic2hlOwCif4

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:44 (three years ago) Permalink

I hadn't heard this before. It's okay, but it's completely unnecessary when everyone is aware of the source material. It also brings up the problem of what Elton mines the Beatles for - he does it a lot from here up to about 1979, and it's always for the most saccharine bits. Needs a bit of Lennon sourness to set it off, which Elton doesn't do.

Ismael Klata, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:47 (three years ago) Permalink

Ooh disagree - I think this song fits the expansive, slightly goofy, stadium rock that EJ was playing live by '74 like a glove. And Lennon is of course on this.

Jeff W, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:59 (three years ago) Permalink

"Wrap Her Up" is terrible when you listen to it and watch the video.

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 14:59 (three years ago) Permalink

Two gay guys pretend to each other they are not.

Mark G, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:04 (three years ago) Permalink

06. "Something About The Way You Look Tonight" (1997) [26 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B93Tir6l5FA

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:08 (three years ago) Permalink

Elton even acknowledges this is from his worst album, though I'm not sure how he feels about the song itself.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:15 (three years ago) Permalink

I really like this! His strained vocal is quite uncharacteristic, and brings real feeling in a way that he often can't manage.

xp Lennon's on it? I forgot they were great pals. What does he do?

Ismael Klata, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:15 (three years ago) Permalink

05. "Circle Of Life" (1994) [36 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zs3NEyQFxGc

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:22 (three years ago) Permalink

"Wrap Her Up" is terrible but not really stand-out-terrible for EJ imo, more like run of the mill dreadful

omg rmde at Nancy Reagan inclusion

what's up ugly girls? (Shakey Mo Collier), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:30 (three years ago) Permalink

Lennon's on it? What does he do?
His credit is 'featuring the Reggae Guitars of Dr Winston O'Boogie'

Jeff W, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:31 (three years ago) Permalink

NAAAAAAAANTS INGONYAAAAAAMAAAA BAGITHI BABAAA

I tweeted too much and I am in jail. (crüt), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:32 (three years ago) Permalink

TIE!

03. "Jamaica Jerk-Off" (1973) [39 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyGU-CJulTs

03. "Crocodile Rock" (1972) [39 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lilZb_9MMHQ

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:33 (three years ago) Permalink

^ Muppet Show performance almost makes me like Crocodile Rock

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:34 (three years ago) Permalink

crocodile rock is fantastic fuiud

I tweeted too much and I am in jail. (crüt), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:34 (three years ago) Permalink

I voted for "Jamaica Jerk-Off" but i think it stands out mostly because it's right after "Grey Seal"

tbh my hated ballot coulda been as long as my actual ballot

voted "Crocodile Rock" on my "real" ballot, don't get the hate

Euler, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:35 (three years ago) Permalink

http://wfmu.org/listen.m3u?show=37319&archive=63515

schwantz, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:38 (three years ago) Permalink

Haha, nice!

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:39 (three years ago) Permalink

Oh, I didn't realise it was "Most hated" section, just thought you'd had only a few votes/consensus..

Mark G, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:39 (three years ago) Permalink

Shhh you're spoiling JF's big reveal!

Jeff W, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:41 (three years ago) Permalink

02. "Can You Feel The Love Tonight?" (1994) [81 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1hcc1QvM2Q

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:45 (three years ago) Permalink

TOO LOW

Euler, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:46 (three years ago) Permalink

^^

Also, I had never heard "Wrap Her Up" or "Something About the Way You Look Tonight" until just now, but together they handily summarize what is so objectionable about Elton during both the 80s and the 90s.

the vineyards where the grapes of corporate rock are stored (cryptosicko), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:47 (three years ago) Permalink

This "Taupin" Best Show call-in is amazing. Thanks, schwantz!

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:49 (three years ago) Permalink

It just gets more and more ridic.

schwantz, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:54 (three years ago) Permalink

01. "Candle In The Wind '97 (Goodbye England's Rose)" (1997) [87 points]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8gO0Z818j4

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:55 (three years ago) Permalink

Also, I had never heard "Wrap Her Up" or "Something About the Way You Look Tonight" until just now

really? SATWYLT was inescapable for five years.

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:58 (three years ago) Permalink

reign of terror

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:58 (three years ago) Permalink

the #1! looooooooooool!!! (and OTM).

I wanna live like C'MOWN! people (Turrican), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 15:59 (three years ago) Permalink

Never in doubt.

Jeff W, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:01 (three years ago) Permalink

I assumed its success was based solely on sharing the disc with CITW '97, but somehow I escaped this one.

the vineyards where the grapes of corporate rock are stored (cryptosicko), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:04 (three years ago) Permalink

Sacrifice didn't make the top 5. I am disappoint :(

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:05 (three years ago) Permalink

oh there's still time

Euler, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:05 (three years ago) Permalink

wow, citw97 only just scraped home

Ismael Klata, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:07 (three years ago) Permalink

I was expecting a points tally to rival its total sales

Ismael Klata, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:08 (three years ago) Permalink

John publicly performed "Candle in the Wind 1997" only once, at the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales, in Westminster Abbey on 6 September 1997.[12] He continues to sing the original version of the song at his concerts, but has repeatedly turned down requests to perform the revised version,[12] even for the memorial Concert for Diana in July 2007, having vowed never to perform it again unless asked by Diana's sons.[13]

He's not completely out of touch with good sense, at least.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:08 (three years ago) Permalink

Re: the Taupin radio skit linked above...the Mick Mars/Nick Rhodes/Pick Withers/Mick Box/Nick Lachey made me LOL so hard I woke my bf up.

the vineyards where the grapes of corporate rock are stored (cryptosicko), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:12 (three years ago) Permalink

*supergroup

the vineyards where the grapes of corporate rock are stored (cryptosicko), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:12 (three years ago) Permalink

Croc Rock rocks!

piscesx, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:31 (three years ago) Permalink

Favorite albums!

10. Elton John (1970) [21 points]

http://www.vinylsurrender.com/Graphics/AlbumCovers2/Elton%20John%20-%20Elton%20John.jpg

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:33 (three years ago) Permalink

Oh, btw, the scoring on the side polls went like this: 1:16, 2:13, 3:10, 4:7, 5:4 for albums and 1:16, 2:13, 3:10 for most hated tracks.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:37 (three years ago) Permalink

Nick Hogan used to be in the band, but that was stupid.

schwantz, Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:39 (three years ago) Permalink

I really like that first album. A lot.

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:39 (three years ago) Permalink

Live in Australia, I learned, has a lot of songs from the first album.

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 20 August 2013 16:48 (three years ago) Permalink

Tracks:
1. Rocket Man
2. Funeral For A Friend/Love Lies Bleeding
3. Grey Seal
4. I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues
5. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
6. Philadelphia Freedom
7. Someone Saved My Life Tonight
8. The Ballad of Danny Bailey
9. Don't Go Breaking My Heart
10. Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters
11. I Think I'm Going To Kill Myself
12. Honky Cat
13. Blues For My Baby And Me
14. I Don't Want To Go On With You Like That
15. I'm Gonna Be A Teenage Idol
16. Madman Across The Water
17. Bennie And The Jets
18. Tiny Dancer
19. The Bitch Is Back
20. I Want Love

Most Hated:
1. Something About The Way You Look Tonight
2. Can You Feel The Love Tonight
3. Wrap Her Up

Wish "I Think I'm Gonna Kill Myself" would've placed higher (although I don't think I've even heard it in over a decade).

chris_coolidge, Friday, 23 August 2013 01:43 (three years ago) Permalink

I still have a lot of Elton listening to do, there's a lot of stuff in these results that I'm still not at all familiar with. I'm so glad we did this, I've gotten a huge kick out of it!

Thanks so much Johnny Fever for stepping in and for rolling it out!

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 23 August 2013 01:48 (three years ago) Permalink

My pleasure! This last three-ish weeks of EJ listening has been fun for me too!

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Friday, 23 August 2013 01:49 (three years ago) Permalink

Thank you very much Johnny Fever for running this poll. There will always be a special place for it in the Tower of Babel of my heart.

Here is my ballot. Better Off Dead wuz robbed!

1. Funeral For A Friend/Love Lies Bleeding
2. Tiny Dancer
3. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
4. Grey Seal
5. Your Song
6. Your Sister Can't Twist But She Can Rock n Roll
7. The Ballad of Danny Bailey
8. Better Off Dead
9. Little Jeannie
10. I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues
11. Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy
12. All the Girls Love Alice
13. Levon
14. Razor Face
15. Candle In The Wind
16. Rotten Peaches
17. Take Me To The Pilot
18. Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting
19. Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters
20. Philadelphia Freedom

kornrulez6969, Friday, 23 August 2013 02:45 (three years ago) Permalink

good job, here was mine

tracks
1. philadelphia freedom
2. funeral for a friend/love lies bleeding
3. someone saved my life tonight
4. take me to the pilot
5. all the girls love alice
6. street kids
7. madman across the water
8. amoreena
9. i’m still standing
10. saturday night’s alright for fighting
11. honky cat
12. the bitch is back
13. goodbye yellow brick road
14. tiny dancer
15. the last song
16. sacrifice
17. levon
18. sorry seems to be the hardest word
19. i don’t want to go on with you like that
20. rocket man

albums
1. tumbleweed connection
2. honky chateau
3. captain fantastic and the brown dirt cowboy
4. goodbye yellow brick road
5. madman across the water

5 worst
1. jamaica jerk-off
2. lucy in the sky with diamonds
3. johnny b. goode
4. island girl
5. your song

enjoyed shakey's counterpoint, not sure how many other artists such a thing would work for, you'd need a massively successful artist w/ no real critical consensus and ambiguity around just how good they actually are and why. i think of a similar artist like rod stewart (who seems to me a more obv counterpoint to elton though that might just be some linkage formed when they went in the rrhof the same year, plus knowing that elton apparently talked rod out of doing the pinball wizard role in tommy before swooping in and doing it himself) and there the obv great stuff is so obv great that a snarky dismissal of 'every picture tells a story' or whatever would just come off as challops while a snarky dismissal of the obv not great 'love touch' would just be a redundant. the bowie comparison shakey and few others bang on is apparent enough that it came up in the big rolling stone interview (where elton just rolls his eyes at bowie's cattiness and a seeming understanding of 'i am a massive popular artist and a total pro and when you're those things you will use whatever useful thing is at hand'; seems way more apparent in the aftermath that bowie envied elton's sales alot more than elton envied bowie's brilliance), the two big rockers that shakey specifically mentions as bowie rips - 'the bitch is back', 'saturday' - have always seemed to me to be fairly straightforward stones rips, albeit early 70s ergo glam; i can certainly hear bowie's 'let's spend the night together' or 'watch that man' as comparisons but still, same clade. i'll also agree w/ the couple of ppl who noted that they used to never hear 'the bitch is back' and now it's suddenly seemingly one of his most played on classic rock and oldies radio (and w/o the obv reason for the upturn that 'tiny dancer' has).

elsewhere: sincere regrets i didn't vote for 'i guess that's why they call it the blues', sincere annoyance 'street kids' didn't make the countdown or pick up a single other vote despite my campaigning for it even and posting that wonderful 'best vines of the 20th century' style video some dork made. which reminds me that the first time i heard 'funeral for a friend/love lies bleeding' was when my uncle gathered us all into his living room in front of his big screen tv to watch a video he had made (at a time when even camcorders were somewhat exotic, nevermind video editing etc) of him snow skiing soundtracked by it, w/ first just the landscape/daunting scenery/etc and then him bam! skiing when the 'funeral' finally kicks in w/ the tesh. i can still hear my dad approvingly nodding and saying 'ah - funeral for a friend' when the video started. my family will occasionally drag out this audio recording i made when i was six of me singing '9 to 5' and just lol it up but i really do need to mention 'at least i wasn't a GROWN MAN making everyone sit thru some eleven minute home movie of me snow skiing set to some elton john prog epic'.

balls, Friday, 23 August 2013 03:31 (three years ago) Permalink

This thread kinda baffles me. I think too many voters grew up in the '80s instead of the '70s, which might explain how a glass of lukewarm piss like "Little Jeanie" made the list. The last few big hits of the '70s--Island Girl, Grow Some Funk, Don't Go Breaking... (but not Sorry Seems to Be...)--showed that his long creative peak was starting to fade, but "Little Jeanie" was the moment he died and zombie Elton John took over.

And another thing... If an Elton-as-bottom-half-of-a-duet song like "Whatever Gets You Through the Night" could get a few votes, where the fuck is "Bad Blood"?!

Hideous Lump, Friday, 23 August 2013 03:33 (three years ago) Permalink

80s hardly seems overrepresented to me and tbh i'm somewhat surprised and pleased at the number of album cuts that made it considering just how many damn hit singles you're talking about and how easily or even likely it would be for a person who only knew elton from the radio to whip up a ballot.

balls, Friday, 23 August 2013 03:42 (three years ago) Permalink

I basically agree about all the '80s hits, but just put that down to a generational thing: if Elton made a good single after about 1975, I'd lost all interest by then and simply wasn't going to hear it.

(I used to like "Bad Blood" when it was on the radio. I gave it a listen when somebody posted a YouTube link upthread and it didn't hold up for me.)

clemenza, Friday, 23 August 2013 03:58 (three years ago) Permalink

I don't think it's even necessarily generational. I just think there are some ilxors who gravitate towards that sound or at least don't reject it out of hand like some of us (ie me) tend to...that's why the voting thread is good because you can read some really considered thoughts about material you'd already dismissed, and then you find that maybe with new ears it's not as terrible sounding as you thought

this happened a little bit with me in the Stones thread as well. I blame Alfred and Ismael, basically :)

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 23 August 2013 04:06 (three years ago) Permalink

I liked gated drums and wimpy synths when they were cool, then when they weren't, and still do now that they're cool again. It's my comfort zone.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Friday, 23 August 2013 04:24 (three years ago) Permalink

42 out of 50 tracks were from the 70s, so it's not like the later stuff dominated in any way.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Friday, 23 August 2013 04:28 (three years ago) Permalink

Yeah, I thought it was cool that they made it to be honest, although I would never have placed any of them so high. But this is one of the most interesting polls I've followed specifically because he's usually regarded by rockists as a lightweight or a pop sideshow, therefore they haven't written a canon, therefore it really is up for grabs. Plenty of stuff in the 20s that you could as easily imagine as the top 5, and tons of album cuts. Great results.

Re: joel, i'm in, partly to make up for my foolish decision to give up 'classic rock canon.' Will put my quarter down when the dust settles on Order & Timing.

Doctor Casino, Friday, 23 August 2013 04:35 (three years ago) Permalink

The eighties aren't overrepresented! The entries that made it arw part of his basic canon.

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 23 August 2013 05:06 (three years ago) Permalink

We may not like it but "Start Me Up" is part of the Stones canon. I don't see how "I'm Still Standing" or "I Guess That's Why..." wouldn't be represented.

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 23 August 2013 05:15 (three years ago) Permalink

there's an obvious answer but imma roll zing-free here...

resulting post (rogermexico.), Friday, 23 August 2013 06:27 (three years ago) Permalink

for real though tattoo you's a special case since mick at least knew they were creatively tapped and virtually all of the material is stitched together from like the previous 8 years of writing and recording

resulting post (rogermexico.), Friday, 23 August 2013 06:29 (three years ago) Permalink

the bitch is back', 'saturday' - have always seemed to me to be fairly straightforward stones rips

i think that's the first time the stones have been mentioned on this thread, which is weird, 'cause elton borrowed a lot from them. the southern americana of "no shoestrings on louise." the horns on "elderberry wine." and all that guitar stuff like "saturday," of course. but he was obviously listening to bowie too. and bowie was listening to the stones and borrowing from them too. they're both sponges.

fact checking cuz, Friday, 23 August 2013 07:25 (three years ago) Permalink

"bad blood" is fantastic. i assumed there wasn't quite enough elton in it to merit a vote in this particular poll. bring on the sedaka poll.

fact checking cuz, Friday, 23 August 2013 07:27 (three years ago) Permalink

"i miss the earth so much/i miss my wife" > "tell my wife i love her very much/she knows"

I used heard the former as a comma rather than the slash that's here..

like, "It's got so bad up here I actually miss my wife"

Mark G, Friday, 23 August 2013 08:13 (three years ago) Permalink

I hear it as a comma too, and used the slash only to be consistent with a previous post quoting the Bowie lyric.

I just liked the juxtaposition of those two statements, in that order. It puts me in the shoes of the titular character, flying alone for a long time in my spacecraft in a different galaxy, pondering which I would miss more, my spouse or just planet earth in general?

Lee626, Friday, 23 August 2013 08:42 (three years ago) Permalink

well, thesedays I don't think elton/bernie actually meant it that way

Mark G, Friday, 23 August 2013 08:49 (three years ago) Permalink

hmm, did not know this:

Solo albums[edit source]
1971 Taupin
1980 He Who Rides The Tiger
1987 Tribe

With Farm Dogs[edit source]
1996 Last Stand in Open Country
1998 Immigrant Sons

Mark G, Friday, 23 August 2013 08:50 (three years ago) Permalink

Well done, everyone. Top 2 spot on.

(Not keen on "Tiny Dancer" but maybe if it had been a hit over here in '71 (the UK was pretty much ignoring Elton circa Madman), I'd feel differently about it. As it is, I'd never heard it until Almost Famous.)

My ballot:
Songs

01. Someone Saved My Life Tonight
02. Ego
03. Are You Ready For Love?
04. Philadelphia Freedom
05. Honky Cat
06. Burn Down The Mission
07. Tonight
08. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
09. Sixty Years On
10. Funeral For A Friend / Love Lies Bleeding

11. Rocket Man (I think it's going to be a long long time)
12. Nobody Wins
13. Grey Seal
14. I Feel Like a Bullet (In the Gun of Robert Ford)
15. Better Off Dead
16. Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me
17. Passengers
18. Madman Across The Water
19. Take Me To The Pilot
20. Skyline Pigeon

LPs
1. 17-11-70
2. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
3. The Union [w/ Leon Russell] <-- placement is trolling but there is some good stuff on this, check it out
4. Honky Château
5. Greatest Hits, Volume II

1, 4 and 5 above are the first EJ records I bought, within days of each other, so nostalgia's playing a big part here. In retrospect, I should have found room for Blue Moves.

Worst songs
1. Candle In The Wind '97
2. Grow Some Funk Of Your Own
3. Circle of Life

Thanks to J Fever for running this, long overdue, poll.

Jeff W, Friday, 23 August 2013 10:03 (three years ago) Permalink

"Nobody Wins "!

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 23 August 2013 11:43 (three years ago) Permalink

haha oh man I just saw the post where Shakey says it's "kind of a toss-up" whether Elton John or David Bowie is a better piano player

some dude, Friday, 23 August 2013 12:53 (three years ago) Permalink

Yeah, A-plus to Shakey for making like two dozen posts in character as OG rockist strawman before anyone bothered to point it out. I do actually agree that some of the slower songs can be on the samey side, but the rest was just bonkers. I say this as someone who's had ''Ballad of a Well-Known Gun'' and ''My Father's Gun'' on alternating mental shuffle for the past eight hours, so I just can't take the criticism as far as ''oh yeah these songs have nothing at all to offer and are boring and forgettable.'' Dude knew a hook, and the arrangements/playing add so much detail and little micro-hooks and surprises. Yeah, they don't usually need to go past four minutes, but there's a lot more in those four minutes than you'd expect to find.

Doctor Casino, Friday, 23 August 2013 15:07 (three years ago) Permalink

the chinese piano re: honky cat = pinnacle of shakey ITT

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 23 August 2013 15:38 (three years ago) Permalink

Note to self, when I have a computer in front of me rather than a phone, write out five-paragraph, line-by-line explanation of why ''Captain Fantastic'' is one of the greatest songs in Elton's catalog.

Doctor Casino, Saturday, 24 August 2013 13:09 (three years ago) Permalink

I'd be interested to read it, because that song means nothing to me.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Saturday, 24 August 2013 15:09 (three years ago) Permalink

Consulting my newly purchased book of Billboard Top Ten charts, I note that Captain Fantastic, after debuting at #1 and staying there for six weeks and returning for a seventh about six weeks later, fell out of the top ten at the end of September 1975. In November, Rock of the Westies debuted at #1: by any standards phenomenal productivity and sales figures. No wonder he burned out a year later.

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 29 August 2013 01:38 (three years ago) Permalink

I was going to be all "LOL u bought a book of Billboard charts?! hahah" ...and then I saw it was you. As you were. :)

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 29 August 2013 01:40 (three years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

Elton's new album The Diving Board is out today, lyrics by Bernie, production by T-Bone Burnett, stripped down rhythm section consisting of Jack Ashford of the Funk Brothers on drums and Raphael Saadiq (!) on bass. not amazing or anything but pretty enjoyable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UttbDHa1uSg

Jean-Claude Brand Ambassador (some dude), Tuesday, 24 September 2013 17:20 (three years ago) Permalink

Was planning on giving it a spin soon.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 24 September 2013 17:22 (three years ago) Permalink

Barry Walters gives EJ the icon treatment and rather well too:

http://www.emusic.com/music-news/icon/emusic-icon-elton-john/

first I think it's time I kick a little verse! (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 25 September 2013 21:12 (three years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

"Crocodile Rock"
Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player, 1973

Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player was my first U.K. Number One album. It had "Daniel," which was pure pop, but there were also songs like "Elderberry Wine" and "Teacher I Need You." And of course it spawned "Crocodile Rock," which was the song that probably changed the critics' opinion of me. It was a really blatant homage to Speedy Gonzales and all the great Fifties and Sixties records that we used to love, like Danny and the Juniors' "At the Hop." My career wasn't about "Crocodile Rock" – it was just a one-off thing – but it became a huge hit record, and in the long run, it became a negative for me, because people said, "Oh, fucking 'Crocodile Rock.' " I'd never started off as a hit writer, and I didn't know what a hit was, and it's evidenced on my first four albums. Rolling Stone reviewed it and gave it two stars, and I said, "Oh, fuck off." It was a great fucking pop record. Shut the fuck up. - haha fair enough

balls, Friday, 11 October 2013 15:06 (three years ago) Permalink

''Speedy Gonzales''?

Doctor Casino, Friday, 11 October 2013 18:06 (three years ago) Permalink

http://youtu.be/O4HT51a4VHY

balls, Friday, 11 October 2013 18:10 (three years ago) Permalink

haha wow that is really blatant

Hip Hop Hamlet (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 11 October 2013 18:16 (three years ago) Permalink

That is an awful, awful song. But wow re: the Elton connection.

Doctor Casino, Sunday, 13 October 2013 00:01 (three years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

i wish there was an audio version of this interview in which scarface recites some classic bernie taupin lyrics.

fact checking cuz, Thursday, 7 May 2015 19:57 (two years ago) Permalink

Oh, and Speedy Gonzales to Bruce Springsteen, also.

Mark G, Friday, 8 May 2015 13:44 (two years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Finally digging into Blue Moves after ages of dismissing it based on the cover art and not knowing any of the songs, figured it would just be a wash of faceless dreary ballads. But actually there's some rockin' here, and some really cool arrangements and musical surprises. It's very very well-recorded, for sure. Still getting to know it so I can't call out any specific moments, but I kinda think it's at least better than Caribou as a listening experience, even though it's nearly twice as long, largely underwritten (so many instrumentals!) and lacks that album's two big hits (both true grab-you-by-the-ears standouts). I dunno, it just seems less stupid.

If the same material had just been worked on longer, filling out the instrumentals as memorable songs in themselves, who knows what might have been? It came out one year after Rock of the Westies, also an album with some problems; if he'd been on a 1990s release schedule, the best material from those two together could have yielded a platter at least as good as Honky Chateau or Don't Shoot Me.... Just need to do something about the sleeves...

Doctor Casino, Monday, 26 September 2016 15:56 (nine months ago) Permalink

four months pass...

I never enjoyed recording studios! I loved the process of writing, but I never enjoyed the process of being in the studio. I always felt like a caged lion

--bernie taupin

fact checking cuz, Wednesday, 15 February 2017 22:50 (four months ago) Permalink

one month passes...

RFI: With search engine disabled, can't seem to find the thread the title quote is from

Got Your Money Changes Everything (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 19 March 2017 19:01 (three months ago) Permalink

it was the elton john voting thread and it was my quote and i can't seem to find it either. but if i had a copy editor, it would've been shortened to "bernie taupin writes godawful lyrics that sound amazing coming out of elton john's mouth."

fact checking cuz, Sunday, 19 March 2017 22:07 (three months ago) Permalink

It might be on the voting thread, but he first time you said it was about a decade ago.

Got Your Money Changes Everything (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 19 March 2017 22:14 (three months ago) Permalink

Found it: Elton John

Got Your Money Changes Everything (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 19 March 2017 22:19 (three months ago) Permalink

Hang the fuck on, did 'Song for Guy' not place!?

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Saturday, 25 March 2017 02:11 (three months ago) Permalink


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