Saturday, July 24, 2010

Elton John Returns to Bordeaux




After 28 years of absence, ELTON JOHN is back to Bordeaux.
Over three hours together with more than forty tunes!

If everyone knows Elton John (his timeless pop standards, his eccentric clothes, his whims and humanitarian commitments), it is not the same for Ray Cooper, who co-starred with him.Both the association Elton John / Billy Joel surprises no one, as far as the latter failed, Ray Cooper remained unknown by the general public. Yet the two men regularly play together for over thirty years, and audiences who were lucky enough to attend in the late 70s, they gave concerts at the Theatre des Champs Elysees know the extraordinary potential of this duo.

Ray Cooper is a percussionist and multi-instrumentalist (piano, vibraphone ...) whose virtuosity is matched only by his dry sense of humor. He recorded and toured with the greats: The Who, Pink Floyd, Rolling Stones, Sting, Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney.

The duo Elton John / Ray Cooper is a classic pop and rock and roll, pure dynamite, which has succeeded in limiting his appearances, to preserve its firepower. This is certainly the best way to see or review the tunes of Elton John!

Exclusive pre-sale at gdp.fr on Tuesday, July 27 from 10am
Reservations VIP Pack vip_eltonjohn@gdp.fr

Friday, July 23, 2010

Smash Hits Hitting DC this November


Elton John is bringing his World Tennis Team Smash Hits charity event to D.C. this November, so get ready for a good cause complete with a legendary pop star here on our home turf.

The 18th annual event will take place on November 15 at American University’s Bender Arena with tennis greats such as Andre Agassi, Anna Kournikova and Stefanie Graf all making an appearance on the court. If we’re lucky, Sir Elton might just take a few serves as well seeing as he has a private tennis trainer who travels on tour with him (so says Politico).

All funds raised through the event will benefit the Elton John Aids Foundation and local Washingon, D.C. Area AIDS charities.

- welovedc.com

Inside Elton's Wardrobe


Jeanne Smallwood is still “walking on air” this week after being chosen as one of two Prince George wardrobe assistants for Elton John’s concert Friday at the CN Centre. First, Smallwood had to agree to keep it a secret.

“We weren’t allowed to say anything before the show. We were sworn to secrecy about the whole thing. Now that it’s over, I’m still about two feet above the ground and it is an experience I will remember forever,” she said.

Smallwood designs and sews costumes and fashion accessories for Excalibur Theatre Arts Company. She and another talented seamstress, Stephanie Larsen, who works her magic with Theatre North West, were contacted several weeks ago and asked if they would be wardrobe assistants for the local show. Would they? Both jumped at the chance.

“I was just so excited. When I first saw Elton John’s dressing room it was just amazing. There was about 25 boxes of shoes, some hand cut and sewn out of suede. He had roses in small vases on the tables, and there was this big bureau with labels from cities where he’d performed all over the world.”

Best of all, she said, were the costumes.

“There were so many incredibly beautiful pieces. There were 40 tuxedos in themes from his popular songs like Goodbye Yellow Brick Road and I’m Still Standing. The one from the Lion King theme had monkeys all down the arms and the one he wore in Prince George with the Crocodile Rock theme had a sequined crocodile with his (Elton John’s) head coming out of the mouth. The costumes were designed for him by Yohji Yamamoto of Japan.”

The local wardrobe mistresses took care of steaming clothes to perfection, (including clothes worn onstage by Elton John’s band members), sewing and repairing tears and replacing buttons.

“Usually we would take care of wardrobe changes but he had the same outfit on all during the show, so we didn’t have to worry about that. We were there to make sure there were no problems with wardrobe. Everything had to be perfect – Elton John is very precise.”

As an added thrill, she got to meet Elton John’s four-legged companions, his two cocker spaniels. “They were really cute.”

Smallwood said she was struck by the legendary singer-songwriter’s well known penchant for beautiful things and his sense of glamour and style. And she loved feasting her eyes on the luxury and opulence that accompanies the superstar wherever he goes.

“I heard (from Elton’s staff) that each of his (designer) tuxedos are worth about $15,000. Everything of his was so pristine. So perfect. I saw about 100 pairs of sunglasses neatly laid out on a table and in every colour of the rainbow. He chose ones with blue lenses for our Prince George show. And there were bottles of all different kinds of cologne. It took six trailers to hold his stuff. His make-up mirror – we lifted it from the truck – is just beautiful and it must have weighed over 100 pounds.”

However if Elton John’s mirror was heavy, Smallwood says it will take her a while before her light-headedness goes away.

“This was a thrill of a lifetime, one that I will remember forever. I even got a special pass to watch the show and I had lunch with his limousine chauffeur. Just being in the presence of such an amazing artistic talent as Elton John is the most exciting thing that’s ever happened to me in my career.”

- BCLocalNews.com

Lee Hall & Elton to Work on New Animal Farm Musical


UK Daily Mail reports that BILLY ELLIOT authors Elton John and Lee Hall will be collaborating again on a new musical based on George Orwell's 'Animal Farm.'

Hall calls 'Animal Farm' "perfectly suited for the stage," and pointed out that its language lent itself well to lyrics. "I'm deep into it," said Hall, "writing songs for pigs and other four-legged friends."

Noting the difficulty of securing the rights to bring the novella to the stage, Hall said, "It's taken about two years. We almost gave up, but there was always that one last licence to go after." Now that the proper rights have been secured, Hall will concentrate his focus on the musical once summer is over. "Having worked with him on Billy Elliot, I know that Elton likes to have the lyrics done and have them in front of him so I'll work on a batch before I give him anything to look at. I would think it's going to take about two years before it's all ready to go."

No word is given on a potential theatre or producer.


Read more: http://www.broadwayworld.com

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Union Now Available for Pre-Order


The Union

Elton John & Leon Russell    Audio CD 
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This title will be released on October 25, 2010.
Pre-order now!
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.co.uk

Tucson AZ Postponed - Elton Has Food Poisoning


The Elton John concert scheduled for Wednesday night at the Tucson Convention Center has been canceled, officials said. 
Concert organizers said he came down with an illness and won't be able to perform.
He has rescheduled to concert for Thursday night at 8 p.m., organizers added.
All tickets purchased for Wednesday will be honored tomorrow.
Anyone who is unable to attend the concert tomorrow night can return their tickets to the place where they were purchased for a full refund, an Elton John representative said.
"Elton apologizes for the inconvenience caused due his illness, but doctors assure him he will be fine for tomorrow's evening performance," the representative said.

- KOLD.com

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Union Cover Art


Above is the fabulous Annie Leibovitz photograph for the front cover of The Union, the new album by Elton John and Leon Russell.

Set for release by Universal in October, 2010, and produced by T Bone Burnett, The Union marks the culmination of a mutual musical adoration that began in the late 1960s, ahead of Elton's debut US performance in 1970 at The Troubadour Club in Los Angeles. The album is a collaboration between Elton and Leon Russell, with songs by Elton and Bernie Taupin; by Elton, Bernie and Leon; by Elton and Leon and by Leon alone.

The Union was recorded in Los Angeles earlier this year, with guest musicians including Brian Wilson, Booker T, Don Was and Neil Young. Cameron Crowe has filmed the sessions for a documentary, creating too a moment of history as this is the first time that the genesis of Elton's music has been recorded on film. Critics who have had an early preview of the album are united in praise for the work that Elton describes as a "Seventies record with a modern feel."

Courtesy EltonJohn.com

Monday, July 19, 2010

Elton May Help Kylie Do An Aussie Charity Concert


Kylie Minogue is planning a star-studded charity fundraiser concert to mark the fifth anniversary of beating breast cancer.

The Aussie pop princess is making plans for a concert featuring showbiz friends like Elton John, Robbie Williams and The Scissor Sisters for February to raise money for cancer charities, The Sunday Mirror reports.

Minogue, 42, wants to involve the Paris-based doctor who oversaw her treatment as a way of saying thank you for her return to health.

"Early next year it will be my five years all clear and I would like to do something to mark that - something like a benefit concert," Minogue told the newspaper.

"We are going to try and arrange something with my professor in Paris."

Minogue, who is jetting back to Australia to be with sister Dannii and her new son Ethan Edward, said she hoped to continue raising awareness of the disease and the importance of early detection.

"I know a lot of women went for screenings after my announcement. And a lot of people came up to me and said I saved them," she said.

"Of course I didn't - but it made them go and get checked."

- AAP

Monday, July 12, 2010

Elton & Ray Returning to Russia



Sir Elton John and percussionist Ray Cooper are expected to give a concert in St Petersburg, Russia, on December 13 this year.

This concert has now been confirmed and will be held at the CKK Arena.

Elton Confirms New Covers Album


Sir Elton John is set to release his first ever covers album.
The Rocket Man has always put out new material, but he's now teaming up with legendary producer T-Bone Burnett to record versions of classic tracks.
Sir Elton tells Britain's Sunday Express, "The U.S. record company asked me to do an album of Motown and a Christmas album. I said, 'F**k off!'
"I'm going to do a solo album with T-Bone Burnett of 50 songs with an orchestra, in a few takes. A bit of Roy Orbison, Ricky Nelson... songs like Little Things Mean A Lot."
- Toronto Sun

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Elton Wants Gordon Brown for EJAF


FORMER PM Gordon Brown is being wooed by Sir Elton John - to work with him to fight Aids.


Mr Brown, 59, has been in talks over taking a post with the singer's charity.
And Sir Elton wants the ex-Labour leader and wife Sarah, 46, to become patrons of the Elton John Aids Foundation.

Sir Elton's husband David Furnish revealed: "Gordon's a friend and we've spoken to him and Sarah about how they could help.

"We talked about Gordon taking up a more active role within the charity. Gordon is very knowledgeable about the subject and we are very excited about him joining our team on a more permanent basis."

Days before resigning as PM in May, Mr Brown spoke of his desire "to do something that helps other people".

He added: "Sarah and I might do charity and voluntary work."

- The Sun

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Live Tour With Leon Russell Delayed to 2011 - Guests Will Appear


Sir Elton plans to play live with Russell to promote the album with different artists guesting, including Elvis Costello, Tom Waits and Neil Young.

The tour will now take place next year, instead of this fall as originally planned.

- Music Week, Billboard

Elton Planning a Solo Covers Album Next





In an entertaining Q&A session hosted by U.K.-based broadcaster Paul Gambaccini, John also held forth on Christmas albums ("My record company in America asked me to do a Christmas record and I just told them to fuck off"), videos ("I fucking hate videos") and even which of his songs would be the best introduction to his music for a 6-year-old ("Just show him 'The Lion King'").

John said he plans to tour with Russell next year and hopes to make another record with him if "The Union" is a success. He also plans to do a solo covers album in the near future.



- Billboard


UPDATE (10/07) : The album is expected to be produced by T Bone, and an orchestra will be utilised. It will be recorded live over three days and will be obscure 50's and 60's tunes.


Stay tuned for more info. 

"My record company wanted me to do a Motown and a Christmas record. I just said f*** off" - Elton


ELTON John says the stars of today should learn from his mistake and get their drug use out of the way when they're young.

The 63-year-old singer, who has been knighted, won several Grammys and sold more than 250 million albums, considers his greatest achievement is getting sober and clean at the age of 43 - but he wishes he'd done it when he was 20 years younger.

"If you can do it, and everyone's going to do it I think because they want to try it, then try and get it over with as quickly as possible, because it's a f***ing waste of time," Sir Elton said yesterday.

"Jared Leto is a great actor and he's also in a band called 30 Seconds To Mars, and I think ... he'd been a crack addict since he was 14 and he'd been sober since 17.

"Jack Osbourne, a friend of mine, he's been sober since he was 18.



"I spent time with (Lady) GaGa last week, and she said, 'You know I got my cocaine over with by the time I was 20'.

"Thank God. I didn't get mine over with until I was 43."

Sir Elton was speaking at the launch of his new album The Union, a collaboration with legendary singer and songwriter Leon Russell.

The Rocket Man said the album was a change of direction for him, away from pop music to a more mature type of album.

"I can't make pop records anymore. I'm 63, I'm never going to be on Top of the Pops - I hate videos, I f***ing hate them," he said.

"I don't think I'm going to be doing Crocodile Rock anymore or anything like that.

"I just want to make records like this one, like Bob Dylan does. Bob Dylan makes great records, Neil Young makes great records, I'm that age group and I just need to go back and make those kinds of records that fit the piano-playing style I have."

Sir Elton hasn't totally abandoned popular music altogether though - he plans to save it for special side projects.

"I love doing things like writing for the Scissor Sisters, being on the Tupac record," he said.

"Those sorts of side projects are fantastic - you know the Ironik (version of) Tiny Dancer - they're the little icing on the cake.

"I love things like Hot Chip and Royksopp and electronic music like Robyn and people like that, but if I made a record like that I wouldn't be true to myself, and I wouldn't know how to make it."

One thing Sir Elton did rule out was making a Christmas album.

"There was a time when my record company wanted me to do a Motown record and a Christmas record. I just said f*** off," he said.

"I am never going to do a f***ing Christmas record. Ever."

The Union is due for release in October.



- News.com.au

"The Union" Unveiled to UK Media Last Night



Sir Elton John says his career as a hit singles artist is now effectively over and he will now concentrate on making albums, starting with a collaboration with Leon Russell.
Sir Elton is one of the most successful singles artists of all time with his run of hits across four decades including Candle In The Wind 1997, the biggest-selling single globally of all time.
However, in conversation last night with writer and broadcaster Paul Gambaccini to promote the forthcoming The Union album with Russell he effectively drew a line under this part of his career.
"I don't have to make pop records any more," he told the event at the Electric Cinema in London. "In the Seventies, Eighties and Nineties the record companies said you had to have a single. I think I've fulfilled my brief. The singles chart is not one I'm going to be in very often any more so my view is to make records that fit my age. I don't think I'm going to do Crocodile Rock any more."
He said his aim now was to make albums like Bob Dylan does, citing the American's Modern Times as a model for his new album with Russell.
The album came about when Sir Elton heard Russell playing on his partner David Furnish's iPod and thought he had not done enough for who he called last night his idol and whom he had not spoken to in more than 30 years. American Russell was one of the most influential songwriters and musicians of the late Sixties and early Seventies and had previously played with the British artist but has been completely out of the limelight for three decades.
Sir Elton then phoned Russell in what turned out to be the nick of time with Russell's wife Jan telling the star, "He had more or less given up and this phone call brought him back to life."
In fact, just the week before recording started on the album Russell, writer of such clasic songs as This Masquerade and Delta Lady, had to have a five-and-a-half-hour emergency operation.
The new album, which will be released by Mercury in the UK in October, is produced by T Bone Burnett who shares its writing with Sir Elton, Russell and Sir Elton's long-time lyricist Bernie Taupin. It also features a stellar line-up of musicians including Booker T, Neil Young and Brian Wilson.
Sir Elton told Gambo most of the tracks were recorded in two takes, a way he now wants to record going forward. "Some of it isn't in perfect time, some of it is a little rough around the edges, but that's good for me," he said.
He also suggested the album would be a difficult seller. "The only way this record can sell is by word of mouth because it's not going to get any radio play, especially in America," said Sir Elton who plans to play live with Russell to promote the album with different artists guesting, including Elvis Costello, Tom Waits and Neil Young.
But his main aim is for the spotlight to be thrown back on the prestigious back catalogue of Russell , who is now being managed by Sir Elton's company. "There's no point in doing this record and not to bring to life his great work," he said.

- Music Week

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Ray & Elton Add More Shows in France & Belgium



Sir Elton John & Ray Cooper will return to France late this year for some more very special intimate concerts. Brussels in Belgium is also on this years itinerary.

Here are the dates:

Brussels, Belgium
Vorst Nationaal
01-Dec-2010

Dijon, France
Zenith
17-Dec-2010

Strasbourg, France
Zenith
18-Dec-2010