Elton John: My Life in 20 SongsCameron Crowe explores Elton's journey from Reginald Dwight to technicolored pop sensation to rehab and back
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Elton John (1970)
What can I say, it's a perfect song. It gets better every time I sing it. I remember writing it at my parents' apartment in North London, and Bernie giving me the lyrics, sitting down at the piano and looking at it and going, "Oh, my God, this is such a great lyric, I can't fuck this one up." It came out in about 20 minutes, and when I was done, I called him in and we both knew. I was 22, and he was 19, and it gave us so much confidence. "Empty Sky" was lovely, but it was very naive. We went on to do more esoteric stuff like "Take Me to the Pilot," of course, but musically, this was a big step forward. And the older I get, the more I sing these lyrics, and the more they resonate with me.