It was my birthday a few days ago and for my slightly deferred ‘present’ I opened up a gift given to me a long time ago but which I kept shrinkwrapped.
The gift was an Elton John DVD – Elton John Greatest Hits: One Night Only. The concert is at Madison Square Garden in 2000, when Elton was still charting.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll always admire Elton John but every pop star has a zenith.
And this DVD captures it, well if not the zenith at least the afterglow.
The fans are, if you can believe it, lighting up the darkness with cigarette lighters instead of phones.
Today such fun would probably be banned by overzealous fire marshals.
For a live performance, this really is quite good. I particularly enjoyed watching the band, many of whom are originals who go way back.
Watching this with my mother it made me happy to see her smile and get into it. And she rightly observed, “he has perfect timing.”
Mom actually bought several Elton records for me and my sibs when we were kids. She was just that type of Mom. We didn’t ask for them. She’d just come home from shopping with new records and tapes every now and then.
So it was only fitting that we would watch this together last night.
As for the person who gave me the DVD, well, our paths no longer cross but I do appreciate it.
We had a good time watching this on a widescreen TV with half-decent speakers. Guest performers include Billy Joel, Bryan Adams (the bad Tweeter), and Kiki Dee.
About the only thing we didn’t like about this film was its abrupt ending. After seeing Elton receiving flowers and bowing to the audience throughout the night, the show suddenly ends without a grand goodbye.
Strange but that’s the way it was edited unless I missed something (I did get up and walk around a bit throughout the night).
The above video, “Rocket Man” is at YouTube in my country but no single tune embodies the fullness of this old-style rock show caught at a very special time, just a year before 9/11 and twenty years before our current global predicament.