Thursday, January 31, 2013

Elton Playing at Bestival & Winston-Salem NC

Elton, you're not known for doing festivals. What made you choose Bestival?

I am known for doing festivals – I played my first festival 47 years ago! That was the sixth National Jazz and Blues festival at Windsor in the summer of 1966, when I was keyboard player in a band called Bluesology. In 1970, after changing my name and becoming a solo artist, I played at the Knokke festival in Belgium, the festival of the Midnight Sun in Sweden and the Yorkshire Folk, Blues and Jazz festival in Krumlin.



Since then I have played at many festivals all over the world, the most recent being last summer when I played at Ibiza 123 Rocktronic festival with Pnau. But I haven't played any of the major festivals in the UK in recent years, so when the opportunity to play Bestival came up I was very interested. Bestival seems to be more of a people's festival, not too big, and very friendly – I like the idea of that.

Bestival is based on 50,000-plus people in fancy dress. Tell us about what you've heard and your own ideas of the power and fun of fancy dress.

As the person who played a concert at New York's Central Park in 1980 dressed in full Donald Duck costume including webbed feet, I think I know quite a bit about the power and fun of fancy dress! When I was a young teenager my parents insisted I wore very conventional clothes, so when I started having success with my music I rebelled against all that and wore whatever I wanted to onstage. In my early years I dyed my hair, wore the stack-heeled platform boots, the crazy glasses and a variety of wonderful costumes, each more outrageous than the one before. At various times I wore enormous feathered head-dresses, cloaks, hot pants, jumpsuits, clown suits, a Minnie Mouse outfit, French Maid, the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty. During one memorable Australian tour I wore a complete 18th-century Mozart costume including powdered wig, silk frock coat, breeches, tights and buckled shoes.

I've heard that the Bestival audience comes in fancy dress and I can't wait to see that, they must all look amazing from the stage. Wearing fancy dress makes us all feel less inhibited so I think it's a great way to enjoy live music.

You were at the original Isle of Wight festival in 1969. What are your memories of your week there and of the island.

I went there with a group of friends from DJM Records. We went specifically to see Bob Dylan, who was a big hero of us all, and he was fantastic. Sitting in that field I could never have imagined that just a year later Melody Maker would run the front page headline 'Dylan digs Elton, ' after he came to one of my first shows in America.

What can Bestival expect from your headline performance?

I'll be playing Bestival with my band, some of whom have been with me since the early days. We will play many of my big hit singles, plus some of the best-known album tracks. 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of the release of the Goodbye Yellow Brick Road album, and we'll be celebrating that anniversary in the summer, so you can expect to hear several tracks from that album. My shows always involve audience participation, singing and dancing, so make sure there is plenty of room for movement inside those fancy-dress costumes!

This year's Bestival takes place between 5-8 September at the Robin Hill Country Park on the Isle of Wight. The other headliner announced so far is Snoop Dogg.

- The Guardian

Elton John and his band return for the first time in 8 years to Winston-Salem’s LJVM Coliseum on Saturday, April 6th performing in concert at 8pm, featuring number one chart hits and classic album tracks from throughout Elton’s incredible five-decade career.

The public on-sale will begin Friday, February 8th at 10 AM.

Tickets are $39, $79, $139 and will be available online at Ticketmaster.com,
at the LJVM Coliseum box office, or charge-by-phone at (800) 745-3000.
A service charge is added to each ticket. There is an 8 ticket limit per customer.

- Beach Carolina

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Answer to first question; "Because he's the best! "Bestival"! ;)

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