Big Time in The Big Apple
By Cheryl Herman
I’ve lost count of how many Elton John concerts I have attended. It’s easily in the dozens as when the star played my local venue more than one night, I generally was there, too.
With the Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour, though, one show was sufficient. The merchandise was unimaginative, and the set list full of the usual fare (although Elton’s enthusiasm and talent make the old songs sound fresh). I would have welcomed unexpected numbers such as the catchy (I’m Gonna) Love Me Again from Rocketman. Or how about album tracks which should have received far more attention, such as Sleeping With The Past’s Whispers (exquisite, really), or The Diving Board’s Can’t Stay Alone Tonight? There’s actually loads of material . . . all just as melodious as the hits!
Having said all that, I thought Elton and the band were in fine form as usual, and I always enjoy hearing true classics like Philadelphia Freedom, Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting), The Bitch is Back, Someone Saved My Life Tonight, and Funeral For a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding.
When Elton returned for the finale in his robe, I was reminded of a peculiar New York Times review many years ago. . . . The writer claimed that Elton acted like he wanted to go home and get into his pajamas!
I have never seen a lacklustre performance from Elton, not then and not now.