Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Elton's 60th Birthday Concert


In all my years of going to Elton John concerts this was probably the most satisfying concert I have seen, and I’ve seen quite a few Elton shows.

Obviously the reason is the set list. As Elton fans we are constantly complaining that Elton does not dig deep enough into is back catalog and pull out the album gems that we all love so much. Lately at his shows he has treated us to 2 or 3 nuggets but ultimately he would fall back into the hits. And how can you blame him. People do not pay hundreds of dollars to go to an Elton John show only to hear songs they do not recognize. They expect the hits and that’s what Elton gives them. I’ve argued many times that to expect Elton to play more of his lesser known music is unreasonable. Elton must cater to all fans, not just the die-hards and stick to what the people want. The hits!

However, lately Elton has been embracing his pas and trying to please his die-hard fans as well as the newer and younger fans that are not as familiar with the “classic years.” In 2005 Elton gave us the “Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy” 30th Anniversary concert where he played the entire album from start to finish, well except for one song. In addition to that Elton had been giving concert goers more than half of each of his previous albums, Songs From The West Coast and Peachtree Road. So it seemed he has been trying to do something different at his shows to counter the “same old set list” complaint.

So that brings us to March 25, 2007, Elton’s 60th Birthday Concert. What a show! And the reason is the set list he treated us too. I never thought I would hear Elton play “Ballad Of A Well-Known Gun” live. To get that along with “High Flying Bird” and “Where To Now St. Peter” would have been more than enough for me. But then Elton gave us “Hercules” “Madman Across The Water” “Roy Rogers” “Empty Garden” “Holiday Inn” “Burn Down The Mission” and starting off the show with “Sixty Years On” made this an incredible concert.

I felt that this was the perfect mix of songs, all of the right choices were made. The obscure tracks flowed perfectly from one to the other and fit in perfectly with the hits. Some fans expressed worry that loading up the show at the beginning with the lesser known songs could set the wrong tone. That was not the case as the show seemed to flow along at just the right speed. I even noticed from where I was sitting that there was not the usual mass exodus to concessions and bathrooms during these songs as there usually is. Everyone seemed to be thoroughly enjoying this stroll down memory lane.

What can Elton do to top this? I am sure some of his fans will find something but for me I am completely satisfied with this show.

Now lets get the complete show out on DVD, pronto!

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