Sir Elton John has performed the first of his six A Day On The Green shows as part of the Australian tour with Geelong turning on one chilly night for one hot performance.
You expect words like “spectacular” and “majestic” in an Elton review and that is exactly what he delivers. 20,000 fans witnessed an end of an era as the Beethoven of our lifetime begins to wind-down down under.
“I’ve had enough applause to last a million lifetimes,” he told the crowd.
So how does a 72-year old legend fit into one show a career that accelerated 49 years ago at 23-years of age with still one of his best songs ‘Your Song’?
Statistically this 25-song set includes 21 songs from the 70s, three from the 80s, one from 2000’s sourced from 12 of his 30 albums.
Farewell Yellow Brick Road by the albums
Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973 (7)
Elton John, 1970 (3)
Madman Across The Water, 1971 (3)
Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only The Piano Player, 1973 (2)
Caribou, 1974 (2)
Honky Chateau, 1972 (1)
Blue Moves, 1976 (1)
Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy, 1975 (1)
Tumbleweed Connection, 1970 (1)
Too Low For Zero, 1983 (1)
Songs from the West Coast, 2001 (1)
Breaking Hearts, 1984 (1)
Every song in the setlist is an Elton John / Bernie Taupin co-write leapfrogging the five album run from 1978’s ‘A Single Man’ to 1982’s ‘Jump Up’ without or rarely with Bernie which featured hits such as ‘Blues Eyes’, ‘Empty Garden’, ‘Nobody Wins’, ‘Little Jeannie’, ‘Part Time Love’ and ‘Song For Guy’.
He also entirely bypassed the 90s, meaning his The Lion King classics ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’ and ‘Circle of Love’ didn’t get a run in this show. That is a nice problem to have. I could go through the hits that aren’t played and you would put together a whole other all-hit show with those. That is how amazing this career has been.
The Elton John sound has a lot to do with the early Elton John Band. From that era:
– Drummer Nigel Olsson was with Elton from the start.
– Musical Director and guitarist Davey Johnstone has worked with Elton since 1971.
– Percussionist Ray Cooper played his first show with Elton on 5 February 1972. (Fun fact: Ray was a member of Blue Mink and played on America’s ‘Horse With No Name’, Carly Simon’s ‘You’re So Vain’ and David Essex ‘Rock On).
Up on the big screens the archival footage time-travels you back to the era of the song.
The Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour is slightly deceptive in that Sir Elton is not retiring from performing, he is just retiring from touring. One-off shows and residencies will become the future of the performing life. This is not the last time you can see him live but it is definitely the last time he will come to you.
Elton John Farewell Yellow Brick Road setlist
Bennie and the Jets (from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973)
All the Girls Love Alice (from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973)
I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues (from Too Low For Zero, 1983)
Border Song (from Elton John, 1970)
Tiny Dancer (from Madman Across The Water, 1971)
Philadelphia Freedom (single, 1975)
Indian Sunset (from Madman Across The Water, 1971)
Rocket Man (I Think It’s Going to Be a Long, Long Time) (from Honky Chateau, 1972)
Take Me To The Pilot (from Elton John, 1970)
Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word (from Blue Moves, 1976)
Someone Saved My Life Tonight (from Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy, 1975)
Levon (from Madman Across The Water, 1971)
Candle in the Wind (from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973)
Funeral for a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding (from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973)
Burn Down the Mission (from Tumbleweed Connection, 1970)
Daniel (from Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only The Piano Player, 1973)
I Want Love (from Songs from the West Coast, 2001)
Sad Songs (Say So Much) (from Breaking Hearts, 1984)
Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me (from Caribou, 1974)
The Bitch Is Back (from Caribou, 1974)
I’m Still Standing (from Too Low For Zero, 1983)
Crocodile Rock (from Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only The Piano Player, 1973)
Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting (from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973)
Your Song (from Elton John, 1970)
Goodbye Yellow Brick Road (from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, 1973)
Upcoming Elton John A Day On The Green shows:
• Jan 18, 2020 – Sirromet Wines, Mt Cotton QLD
• Jan 19, 2020 – Sirromet Wines, Mt Cotton QLD
• Jan 29, 2020 – All Saints Estate, Rutherglen VIC
• Jan 31, 2020 – Rochford Wines, Yarra Valley VIC
• Feb 1, 2020 – Rochford Wines, Yarra Valley VIC