Wednesday, December 31, 2008

THE 2008 HIT PARADE HALL OF FAME: ELTON JOHN


Reginald Kenneth Dwight was born in Pinner, Middlesex, England on March 25, 1947, where at a very early age his appreciation of music included piano lessons at seven and a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music at eleven years of age. As a teenager influenced by America’s Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and other rock stars of the day, he began a career that would make him one of the most successful recording artists of all time.

With a name change to Elton John, his first million selling single, “Your Song” in 1971 was followed by “Levon” and “Tiny Dancer.” The following year “Rocket Man,” and “Honky Cat” went gold with his first #1 hit, “Crocodile Rock” topping the Hit Parade. “Daniel,” “Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting” and “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” continued Elton John's hit streak in 1973. Beginning 1974 with another #1 hit “Bennie and the Jets,” “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me,” “The Bitch Is Back” and “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” each topped the charts. “Philadelphia Freedom,” “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” and “Island Girl” earned more gold in 1975. In 1976, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” and “Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word” were million selling singles. It was “Mama Can’t Buy You Love” in 1979 and “Little Jeannie” in 1980. “I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues” in 1983, “Sad Songs” in 1984 and joining Dionne Warwick, Stevie Wonder and Gladys Knight in 1985, “That's What Friends Are For” topped the Hit Parade. In 1986 “Nikita” earned gold as did “Candle In The Wind” in 1987 and “I Don’t Wanna Go On With You Like That” in 1988.

A five time Grammy winner, with an Academy Award to his credit, Elton John has sold more than an estimated 250 million albums. Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II, he was also inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and a recipient of a Kennedy Center Honor.With his home in the English county of Berkshire, Elton John also has residences at Holland Park in London, in Atlanta, Georgia and in France and Italy.

THE INDUCTION CEREMONIES