Elton John's Southern Tribute

Here is an excerpt from an interview with Elton John's co-author Bernie Taupin, published on the official Elton John's website, concerning "Peachtree road", his latest album: the question that follows is about "Porch swing in Tupelo": EltonJohn.com: Tell us the story behind Porch Swing in Tupelo. Bernie Taupin: "Porch Swing In Tupelo is exactly what it says it is, a recounting of a Sunday drive I took down the Natchez Trace from Nashville to Tupelo. It's an absolutely extraordinary stretch of pure Americana and something anyone with a thirst for history should not miss out on given the opportunity. That the trip wound up at Elvis' birthplace and I ended up relaxing on his front porch swing is purely coincidental. The song is more a homage to the natural beauty of the south and how its heritage just seems to hang in the air. The overall feel of the track seems to convey this, I think." Here is an excerpt from an Elton John's interview from www.rollingstone.com about "Peachtree road". He talks about Elvis tragic final years: "Porch Swing in Tupelo," on "Peachtree Road," concerns Elvis Presley. Has it occurred to you that you're doing Vegas during a healthier time in your life than the King did? I remember seeing Elvis in concert the year before he died. My mom was there, and we met him backstage. I knew he would be dead in a short time. He was so tragic. Yet within that tragic persona -- he came onstage and was like a zombie -- there were flashes of incredible brilliance. But it was suffocated by all the shit going on inside his body, the shit that he was doing to himself. If he had lived in Britain, I don't think that would have happened to him. The celebrity world of America has too many yes men. You get cocooned. At least when I was doing drugs, I had my good friends move away from me because they didn't want to know me. Were you ever close to an Elvis-like tragic ending? Oh, yeah, absolutely. Just look at the footage of me from the Ryan White funeral [AIDS activist White died in 1990 at age eighteen], where I'm huge, and I have white hair, and I look seventy years old. I can't believe that Elvis died at only forty-two. It seemed to me that he was sixty when he died, because he looked sixty.
Source: Email / Updated: Oct 28, 2004 
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