ELTON JOHN EXPERIENCE:
Members: Elton John
Genre: Rock and Roll / Pop Music
Hometown: Pinner, London, England
Awards: Inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1992, inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994, Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance
Albums: Empty Sky, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Blue Moves, The Fox, The Peachtree Road, The Captain and the Kid
Hits: "Candle in the Wind," "Song For Guy," "Im Still Standing," "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road," "Thats What Friends Are For," "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?"
In 1962, Reginald "Reggie" Dwight sat down at the piano of a nearby pub, playing tunes for locals in exchange for paltry pay and tips. Nowadays, the pianist, better known as Elton John, has sold more than 250 million records and has become one of the most successful musical artists of all time.
The transition from performer at the corner bar to international sensation didn't happen overnight, but when Elton John finally did skyrocket to the top of the charts, he left an indelible mark on the world of music, fashion and modern culture.
A natural, John started playing piano at the age of three, performing at family gatherings in his native Middlesex, England. By the age of seven, he was mimicking the energetic rock-and-roller Jerry Lee Lewis while tickling the ivory and won a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music by age 11. As a youngster, the pianist remembers being captivated by performers like Elvis Presley and Bill Haley & His Comets - influences that would shape the artist's music and style as he stepped into the limelight.
In 1972, the Elton John Band released the album Honky Chateau, which rode hit singles like "Rocket Man" and "Honky Cat" to the number one spot on the American charts. The following year, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road cemented John's status as a glam rock star with songs like "Bennie and the Jets," "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting," and "Candle in the Wind."
To complement the stardom and acclaim John enjoyed in the 1970's, the icon developed a flamboyant style and attitude that thrilled his fans and made him the subject of widespread public interest. Fans who loved his music were bowled over by his stage presence, which often included costumes and dazzling performances. The star became known for his sparkling, oversized glasses, gaudy attire and the splendor of character to match. In the past, John has performed in glitzy leisure suits, a full-sized Donald Duck costume and suits in which the pinstripes were made of Christmas lights.
Later in his career, the rocker hasn't slowed down. In 1992, he accompanied Guns N' Roses in a version of "November Rain" during the MTV Video Music Awards. He hit it big with Disney's audience, writing "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" for The Lion King, and sold 33 million copies of "Candle in the Wind in 1997," which he dedicated to his departed friend, Princess Diana.
As Elton John continues to play concerts, there's little doubt that the performer has solidified his career as nothing short of legendary.