The Other Piano Man

a box full of junk

Are you ready to go dumpster diving into the 100% biodegradable world of digital memories that exists in the vastness of the internet?  Then let’s get started with this Earth Day edition of Random Image Inspiration!  Hopefully the Randomator doesn’t leave too big of a carbon footprint…

18, 42, 16, 26

The 18th post in my Reader was this one by Marilyn

The 42nd word in that post is “globes”

The 16th word in that post is “also”

Putting “globes also” into Google Images brought this up as the 26th result…

I believe the gentleman on the right would be the one and only Reginald Kenneth Dwight.  You probably know him best as Sir Elton John.

Elton John is one of, if not THE most prodigious artist at putting songs on the music charts in rock history.  From his debut in 1970 through the end of the 20th Century, you would have to look hard to find a weekly Billboard chart that didn’t have one of his songs somewhere within its list.  With so many hits, and in a variety of styles… it would be nearly impossible for anyone to not have an Elton song they really love.  And likewise, one they can’t stand…

The same could be said for Elton’s gaudy collection of glasses.

So with that being said… here are my lists I hastily threw together of my five favorite Elton John songs, and five Elton songs that make me cringe.  Let’s start off with the good news…

Fave #1: “I’m Still Standing” – Fun song with an even funner video…

Fave #2: “Daniel” – This is such a sweet, easy listening song that actually has a more serious backstory to it… much of which is lost on the listener because the final verse was cut from the song (A fact I just learned about last week)

From Wiki:

“‘Daniel’ had been the most misinterpreted song that we’d ever written,” explained (Bernie) Taupin, in the Two Rooms tribute project. “The story was about a guy that went back to a small town in Texas, returning from the Vietnam War. They’d lauded him when he came home and treated him like a hero. But he just wanted to go home, go back to the farm, and try to get back to the life that he’d led before. I wanted to write something that was sympathetic to the people that came home.”

Fave #3: Grey Seal” – This song wasn’t released as a single, but came from Elton’s best known album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.  It is easily my favorite Elton John song I’m aware of… and you can listen to it in my DVA feature on it from last year.

Fave #4: “I Don’t Wanna Go On With You Like That” – This song was big in the summer of 1988, but ultimately dropped off the map to become one of Elton’s lost hits.  I loved it back when I was 13, and still love it now…

Fave #5: “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” – An autobiographical account of a dark time in Elton’s pre-fame life when he made a half-hearted attempt at suicide.  It’s over six minutes long, but in the prog rock days of the 70’s, that was fine and dandy for it to get radio airplay.

And now for my the Unfantastic Five (Sorry, no videos of this dreck)….

Crap #1: “Your Song” – This was the single that launched Elton’s career…. and it’s a rambling ode to random schmaltz.  This would be like Leonardo da Vinci garnering his first publicity by turning in a coloring book page…

Well, it does look better than the Mona Lisa (What did everyone see in THAT?)

Crap #2: “Tiny Dancer” – The only fun thing about this song is substituting “Tony Danza” everytime Elton says “Tiny Dancer.”  And that actually gets old quick…

Crap #3: “Sad Songs Say So Much” – I hate to pile on an 80’s song…. but man, this wasn’t good.  And it doesn’t help its case that it was a longtime, chronic Mecca earworm I had shoved down my cochlea every night…

Crap #4: “Empty Garden” – I mentioned this before, but with the exception of George Harrison, all of the John Lennon tribute songs blew chunks.

Wanna hear “Empty Garden” played in front of an empty arena?

Crap #5: “Rocket Man” – Good Lord, what is this song’ appeal that makes it one of Elton’s classics?  It’s fucking awful… and I like to think William Shatner was mocking it, not desecrating it.

Have yourself another hit there, Shat.

So, what are your faves/non-faves of Sir Elton’s?


About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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36 Responses to The Other Piano Man

  1. noelleg44 says:

    I like Don’t Go Breaking My Heart with Kiki Dee.

  2. Pingback: Evil Squirrel in Sequins? | sparksfromacombustiblemind

  3. Here are my top five: My own ‘top’ five Elton songs are: Bennie and the Jets, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Empty Garden, Someone Saved My Life Tonight and lastly “Requiem For a Friend” (talk about a tribute to John song..whoa).

    I also posted a blog post about my extremely long comment here prior to getting a grip and shortening it. I agree fully with Noelle there, “Don’t Go Breakin’ My Heart” is an AWFUL song. How did you miss that on your worst list? O_o

    • I like Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (maybe a 6 out of 10)… it’s happy and peppy without being annoying. Bennie & the Jets is another pretty good one! If you didn’t like the Kiki Dee duet, I wonder what you would have thought if I included the dorky “Island Girl,” which would have been my sixth fave song had I expanded the list…

  4. Oops. “FUNERAL for a friend” should be that title, not “REQUIEM for a friend”..

  5. Ally Bean says:

    Crocodile Rock, baby. That’s my favorite EJ song. Although Bennie and the Jets is good, too. Maybe it’s my favorite. I dunno.

    • Those are both good ones, way better than Rocket Man and Tiny Dancer. You don’t have to pick a favorite out of the 800 or so songs he did… I was just inviting everyone else to share what they liked (or disliked)…

  6. Never was a particularly huge fan of the “Reg,” but if I had to pick one song that wasn’t schmaltzy or so overplayed I wanted to shove a red hot poker in my eye, it’d be this one

  7. Honest two faves of Elton’s are “Daniel” and “Someone Saved My Life Tonight”…………So many of his songs were OVERPLAYED that I became sick of many of them and they probably WERE pretty good songs – I just got so tired of hearing them over and over. “I’m Still Standing” video is terrific and fun.


    • I miss the old 70’s station I listened to about 25 years ago that played a wide variety of Elton’s hits. He has been reduced down to just a couple songs that get played all the time now… with Rocket Man and Tiny Dancer topping the repeat offenders list. That I wouldn’t even want to hear either of those songs once, let alone 100 times makes the overplay even worse…

  8. Someone Saved My Life Tonight is the only song of his I ever liked. I never knew it was about suicide. I thought he was talking about escaping marriage because he talked about being altar bound. Huh.

    • That he felt trapped in that relationship was what led him to attempt suicide. Though his heart must not have been in it since he turned the gas on, but left the window open.

      Philadelphia Freedom is another good one!

  9. Oh! I liked Philadelphia Freedom, too.

  10. Rocket Man is the kind of thing wimpy sci fi readers instantly recognize as being part of our world. It just is.

  11. I am completely hopeless at old music. I don’t remember the song, the lyrics, or the singer.. I really am bad. But I remember pointless trivia much better.

    • Pointless trivia is much more important, and might win you big bucks on a game show. Remembering lyrics is no big deal… even the singers don’t remember them, which is why they have to lip synch.

  12. Trisha says:

    I’ve always felt pretty meh about Elton John. I think Daniel is the only song of his I really like but then I don’t remember half of these. I was going to say that Rocket Man wasn’t all that bad but then I listened to part of it to refresh my memory. Some songs are better when you listen to them in a quiet environment with earbuds so you can really hear them. Rocket Man is not one of those songs!

    • I don’t get Rocket Man’s appeal at all… it must have been our space obsessed culture at the time. Having looked up a lot of the songs on YouTube that I hear for the first time at Mecca with all the background noise there, I can say it is true that some music sounds better or worse when you listen to it in a quiet environment!

  13. I always liked Madman Across the Water as a complete album (it contains Tiny Dancer though😳) 😉

  14. Every time I hear Crocodile Rock I remember how much Little Guy loved Bob the Builder. The connection is from a Bob the Builder Christmas video featuring a song writer with funky glasses and this song. Little Guy is 14 & denies he was ever a kid. Lol

  15. randomlyerin says:

    Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, no question. And I thought the bio-pic they made was really good. Hard to watch in parts, but excellent.

  16. draliman says:

    “I’m Still Standing ” is definitely one of the good ones, but I reckon “Rocket Man” isn’t so bad…

  17. mydangblog says:

    Benny and The Jets will always be my favourite. I despise Tiny Dancer–I don’t even know what that is–a very small ballerina?

  18. I have a funny story but I also have poison oak in my eye so I’ll tell you later. Love Elton John. Not all but most. He could play the piano for me for days on end and I’d be in heaven (but not dead yet)

  19. ghostmmnc says:

    I can’t think of any of his songs that I don’t like. There ares so many good ones. I really like “I guess that’s why they call it the blues”, and “Philadelphia Freedom”. 🙂

  20. Quirky Girl says:

    After watching that movie Sing a few years ago, I can’t listen to I’m Still Standing without picturing a giant gorilla belting it out…

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