‘It’s been a long journey’

Elton John performs

Elton John performs “Bennie and the Jets” as he wraps up the US leg of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour on November 20, 2022 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. (Photo: Reuters/David Swanson)

“Tonight is very special. We’re making history tonight. It’s been a long road,” a tearful Sir Elton John said Sunday, addressing a sold-out crowd (and fans watching at home via Disney+ live) during not only the final performance of his three-night stand at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. , but his last North American stadium show ever.

Elton’s Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour itself has been a long journey indeed: John announced his retirement from touring nearly five years ago, back in January 2018. And since then he’s barely kept a low profile, essentially becoming the hardest-working retiree in show business. Over the past four years or so, he released his biopic, Rocket Man, which won the Oscar for Best Song; his autobiography, me; a locked sessions, an all-star pandemic album featuring Eddie Vedder, Miley Cyrus, Dua Lipa, Lil Nas X, Nicki Minaj, Young Thug, Rina Sawayama and Stevies Wonder and Nicks. He has also worked with Lady Gaga and Ed Sheeran; collaborated on the new Tammy Faye Messner musical with Jake Shears Scissor Sisters and the stage adaptation The devil wears prada with Shaina Taub; and even talked Britney Spears into recording her retirement. And of course, he played a whopping 272 concerts, including one on the White House lawn.

So, as the old saying goes: How can we miss him when he’s not gone? As it turns out, Elton will be sorely, sorely missed. On Sunday, as he returned to Dodger Stadium — the site of two of his most historic concerts — the 75-year-old was still playing at his circa-1975 peak, ever since those rousing keyboard hits of “Bennie and the Jets” opened the show. Only once during his marathon set — when he melodramatically slumped over the piano after jamming an epic, extended version of one of his favorites, “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” — did he show any real signs of human frailty. It seemed inconceivable that he wouldn’t come back the very next night to hit another outfield.

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Sir Elton John performs on stage during the Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour at Dodger Stadium.  (Photo: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images)

Sir Elton John performs on stage during the Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour at Dodger Stadium. (Photo: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images)

But for two very fleeting hours, John delighted his audience of Elton cosplayers – superfans all decked out in bedazzled Dodgers uniforms, oversized rhinestone sunglasses, “I’m Still Standing” summer suits and pig hats, enough sequins to fill an entire supermarket JOANN Fabric and Crafts and in at least one instance a Donald Duck costume like the one John wore in Central Park in 1980. a massive span of red-feathered wings that probably blocked the view of half the row behind her.) “Thanks for dressing up. I’m so happy to see you all in costume,” Elton said at the end of his concert while donning his third over-the-top outfit of the night, a bejeweled Dodgers robe.

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JoJo Siwa arrives at the Disney+ “Elton John Live: Farewell From Dodger Stadium” Yellow Brick Road farewell event at Dodger Stadium. (Photo: Steve Granitz/FilmMagic)

Fans file in to see Elton John perform as he wraps up the US leg of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour at Dodger Stadium.  (Photo: Reuters/David Swanson)

Fans file in to see Elton John perform as he wraps up the US leg of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour at Dodger Stadium. (Photo: Reuters/David Swanson)

Elton kept his onstage banter to himself — not mentioning last night’s tragic shooting at Q LGBTQ+ nightclub in Colorado or the shocking attack on a couple in the Dodger Stadium parking lot at his show on Saturday. Instead, he expressed his love for LA, saying, “I first came here to America in 1970—Los Angeles, the city of angels,” recalling how LA Times Robert Hilburn’s musical review of his now legendary show at the Hollywood Troubadour changed his life. “I’ll never forget that. … I became successful in America first. I wouldn’t be here without America.” He also recalled how he was “overwhelmed” early in his career when Aretha Franklin covered his “Border Song” and sentimentally introduced her longtime songwriting partner Bernie Taupin.

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“We’ve been writing to each other since 1967 and love each other more than ever. He’s an amazing guy,” Elton gushed, hugging Taupin and telling him, “I love you. Thank you for all the donations.” Taupin then declared John “the greatest man on the planet” as the audience roared in approval.

Taupin was not the only special guest at this lovefest. Brandi Carlile joins “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” (dedicated to John’s late band members John LoPresti, Dee Murray, Roger Pope, Guy Babylon, and Bob Birch) wearing her own fashionable take on Elton . cosplay with a blue/grey/white color suit “Rocket 1” and looks adorable as a star throughout this catch me moment. (When Carlile performed at John’s annual Oscar viewing party earlier this year, she told a crowd of A-listers that John “shaped the way I walk the world as an artist.”) Kiki Dee, who was there at John’s first Dodger Stadium show 47 years ago, released for their classic duet “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” and Dua Lipa teamed up with Elton for their 2021 hit “Cold Heart,” which just won American Music’s Collaboration of the Year. The award ceremony is a few kilometers away.

“I can’t tell you how proud I am to be 75 years old to have the No. 1 record. 1 in the entire world,” declared John as Dua walked off the stage while shouting out the recent success of her collaboration with Britney Spears, “Hold Me Closer.” It seemed like a set-up for a surprise Britney cameo…but again, no. Instead, John played his first hit single, “Your Song,” though concertgoers didn’t seem too disappointed.

Although this was John’s last show in America, he won’t be away from the stage for too long: His Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour continues in January with dates in Australia and New Zealand, before continuing on to Britain and Europe before ending in Sweden. in July 2023. And then he did not rule out smaller concert residencies or occasional one-off performances. “What I love more than anything is playing live,” he assured the crowd at Dodger Stadium on Sunday. But he still seemed very at peace with his decision to leave his grueling tour schedule, bringing out his husband David Furnish and their sons Elijah and Zachary to remind the crowd that the reason for his retirement is to spend more time with his family. .

“I don’t really look back a lot,” Elton told Yahoo Entertainment in 2018. “But when I do, remember what I did. I lived 10 years in one year. I just had fun. I mean, so many wonderful things happened. If you had told me in 1970 that I would be sitting here… talking about a farewell tour, I would have said, ‘You’re crazy!’ But then, 10 years ago, if you had said I was going to have kids — two kids — I would have said, ‘You’re crazy.’ This is my life; I’m willing to let it develop as it should. I’ve had the most amazing career. It won’t stop.”

Elton John’s complete Dodger Stadium setlist for November 20 was:

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Bennie and the Jets

Freedom in Philadelphia

I guess that’s why they call it the Blues

Border song

Little dancer

Have mercy on the criminal

Rocket Man

Take me to the pilot

Someone saved my life tonight


A candle in the wind

Funeral for a friend / love lies bleeding

Burn Down the Mission

Sad songs (Say So much)

Sorry seems to be the hardest word

Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me (with Brandi Carlile)

The bitch is back

I’m still standing

Crocodile rock

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (with Kiki Dee)

Saturday night is fine for a fight


Cold Heart (with Dua Lipa)

Your song

Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

Read more from Yahoo Entertainment:

· Elton John remembers surprising Iggy Pop on stage — in a gorilla suit

· Elton John recounts family-focused farewell tour: ‘I can’t go on forever’

· Taron Egerton on the Elton John song that changed his life

· ‘Rocketman’ star Taron Egerton on gay story: ‘I’m very proud that our film is bringing it to the fore’

· Brandi Carlile praised Ryan White on stage at Elton John’s Oscar party: ‘I don’t take standing here lightly’

· Bernie Taupin on awkward but important ‘Rocketman’ scene: ‘It absolutely happened’

· Elton John’s guitarist Davey Johnstone on how John Lennon’s last public appearance led to Yoko Ono’s reconciliation: ‘It was very special for them’

· Elton John’s warning during coronavirus benefit: “It wasn’t that long ago that there was another infectious disease that was ignored”

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