I am a fan of Elton John. I grew up with his music and have booked tickets for his Dublin concert next year. Even so at nearly 350 pages his autobiography needed to be interesting, tell stories I’d not heard already and be engaging. It was all of that and more.
The book flows brilliantly, with honesty and humour. You do feel that he is telling his story just to you, the reader. It is a hugely personal book that will engage any music fan and lover.
This is the first and only official autobiography and as well as telling the stories from his point of view he is also taking control of the stories. You’ll remember many as they were splashed across the front pages of the red tops but here John is telling the truth.
What I’d forgotten or not grasped was that he was so young when he achieved huge fame. He was twenty-three, performing his first gig in America, facing an astonished audience in his bright yellow dungarees, a star-spangled T-shirt and boots with wings. His life and the music world would never be the same again. His life has been full of drama, from the early rejection of his work with songwriting partner Bernie Taupin to spinning out of control as a chart-topping superstar; from half-heartedly trying to drown himself in his LA swimming pool to disco-dancing with the Queen; from friendships with John Lennon, Freddie Mercury and George Michael to setting up his AIDS Foundation.
He is incredibly truthful about the drug addiction, which is impressive by anyone’s standards. It is a nothing short of a miracle that he is alive and well in 2019.