With thanks to the GRAMMYs, Recording Academy and Paramount Pictures for the invite, this wonderful group of recording engineers and I just experienced the premiere of the film “RocketMan” – the amazing story on the life of songwriter, pianist, rock star and living legend, Elton John which will be released this Friday.
Sir Elton John sold over 300 million albums and yes, the music and the film is simply superb and yes, we were issued those Elton Star Sunglasses as we entered the Sherry Lansing Theater at Paramount Pictures ! 😎
On a personal note, I had the privilege to meet Elton in Dubai when we shared the stage while I was performing with the New Carlos Santana Band there in 2010.
Even though I had been around lots of famous people throughout my career, Elton left me in awe – after all, as a fellow pianist, I, like so many Elton fans, was and still caught in the magical chords and soaring melodies of his massive hits. Talk about Melody, Harmony, Rhythm and scOre ! Elton is in a class of his own. Yet, as bigger-than-life as he appears, he is at once vulnerable, authentic and to this day, exemplary of what it is to embrace diversity from a world perspective.
Of course, you may well know his signature hits which include : “Your Song”, “Saturday Night’s All Right for Fighting”, “Bennie and the Jets”, “Goodbye Yellow brick Road” and “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me”….to name just a few! Edgy, soulful, melodic, heartfelt… like his music, Elton was impeccable, gracious and the consummate gentleman and is to this day.
In this photo, I’m surrounded by great sound engineers: L to R: Brian Risner, yours truly, Lenise Bent, my long time friend and engineer, Myron Chandler, Cathy Worth and Aileen Holmes.
If you are a music lover (hey, who isn’t?) you gotta see this film. How music can overcome struggles with one’s identity, provide escape, comfort and soothe a lonely heart are all deeply explored and poignantly stated. It is a great achievement and a solid movie with an enduring story.
Music is practically the only thing that heals such emotional scars and Elton had a lot of demons to wrestle and in the end is currently raising two boys and donating millions to curing HIV through his own charity… Bravo Maestro! So, get to the launch pad, aim thrusters to your local theater and enjoy the take offmand, the ride !