.

Elton John Dedicates Beijing Concert to Chinese Dissident

Artist Ai Weiwei was detained for three months last year

Elton John performs at his concert in Wukesong Stadium in Beijing on November 26th 2012.
STR/AFP/Getty Images
November 26, 2012 9:50 AM ET

Elton John caused a stir last night by dedicating his show in Beijing to Chinese political dissident and artist Ai Weiwei, The Associated Press reports. John made the dedication minutes into his set, saying the show was for "the spirit and talent" of Ai. The artist is a touchy subject in China, and the crowd was noticeably surprised by John's dedication, several audience members said.

Ai, a sculptor and installation artist, has explored social injustice through his art, which has caused controversy in China. He was detained for almost three months last year and is prohibited from leaving the country. Ai and John were able to meet before the show, snapping a pic together.

Though Chinese media outlets covered the concert, they did not report John's dedication to Ai. The Chinese government exerts tight control over live shows, requiring artists to receive approval for a list of songs, cast and crew members. Their standards became more stringent after Björk shouted "Tibet, Tibet," during a 2008 show in Shanghai.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Hungry Like the Wolf”

Duran Duran | 1982

This indulgent New Romantic group generated their first U.S. hit with the help of what was at the time new technology. "Simon [Le Bon] and I, I think, had been out the night before and had this terrible hangover," said keyboardist Nick Rhodes. "For some reason we were feeling guilty about it and decided to go and do some work." Rhodes started playing with his Jupiter-8 synth, and then "Simon had an idea for a lyric, and by lunchtime when everyone else turned up, we pretty much had the song." The Simmons drumbeat was equally important to the sound of "Hungry Like the Wolf," as Duran Duran drummer Roger Taylor stated it "kind of defined the drum sound for the Eighties."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com