8 Jan 2008
The Story Behind "The Bridge"
"The Bridge" in lyrically terms, is the pivotal song on the album, and seems to comment on the tasks faced by Elton and Bernie, as they move from youthful iconicity to maturity, answering the question of how one matures when most of his adult life - indeed, the largest part of his life - has been spent in to music industry.
In the early and mid-70's, both composed emotional songs about difficult relationships, drugs, parties, and fantasies of cowboys and American culture. For two men thrust into the world of pop superstars in their early and mid 20's, these would seem understandable topics of concern. Now, Bernie approaching the age of 60 and Elton at his sixties, the topic is of a more eternal, transcendent nature: "Do you cross the bridge or do you fade away?"
Elton in an CBS's interview, on the Early Show programme, told: "In the context that I sing it, it's about having crossed that bridge and survived, the two of us still being together, Bernie Taupin and myself. We've been writing now for nearly 40 years (trying to) chase the ultimate song and not to give up. But it also is applicable to everybody in any walk of life. It's like, 'Don't give up.' There's so many people who give up and jump off the bridge".
The song, is set in a simple, stripped-down production focused on Elton John and his solo piano, with the band backing vocals.