Saturday, July 2, 2011

Elton Has Piano Issues in Cork, Plays 'Song For Guy'

First appearing on stage over 20 minutes late, he exited within seconds clearly not pleased after running his fingers over the keys. "Tell you what, I’ll go off and start again," he said.

A sound check followed, and Sir Elton, dressed in silk purple shirt and black dress coat, embroidered as elaborately as any Irish dancing cloak, reappeared. This time he pounded a couple of keys before apologising: "I’m really sorry, this is not happening," exiting, again, stage left.

Cue another frantic sound check, as the crowd held its collective breath. His backing band launched once more into their instrumental best and finally, the Rocket Man was ready to give it welly.

"This piano’s a Ferrari, but sometimes even Ferraris break down," he said, before launching into pleasantries.

"Good evening Cork, I am very happy to be back, I was in the UK earlier and it was pissing rain and I’m delighted to be here," he said to loud cheers.

Four years after he first sat at his grand piano under the same giant blue and red canopy, the 64-year-old rocker proved he still has what it takes to make a good gig great: talent, a fabulous backing band, a backing chorus specially dressed in green, rapport with his audience — whose appreciation grew with every additional hit — and a groovy new cello-playing Croatian duo Stjepan Hauser and Luka Sulic, who have already become stars on YouTube.

Louder than Concorde (but not quite as pretty), Sir Elton churned out just the right mix to get the crowd going, playing songs ranging from Saturday to Goodbye Yellow Brick Road to Sacrifice to Rocket Man, to Sad Songs (Say So Much), to I Guess That’s Why They Call it the Blues, the first-slow dance for the girl sitting next to me, who was out with the Scouts in Kilcully.

It was that kind of night, full of great songs that once struck a chord with people at formative times in their lives and who last night found themselves more than happy to relive the experience.

Read more:


1. Funeral For Friend/Love Lies Bleeding
2. Saturday Night's Alright (For Fighting)
3. Levon
4. Madman Across the Water
5. Tiny Dancer
6. Philadelphia Freedom
7. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
8. Sacrifice
9. Rocket Man
10. I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues
11. Hey Ahab
12. Gone To Shiloh
13. Monkey Suit
14. Sad Songs (Say So Much)
15. Song For Guy/Take Me To The Pilot
16. Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word
17. Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me
18. Are You Ready For Love?
19. Bennie and the Jets
20. The Bitch Is Back
21. Crocodile Rock
22. Your Song

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