Total Pageviews

19 Jul 2008

The Eltonite's Day: The Live Duet Interview with two of the greatests: Dixie Lily & Laurent!!!!

This is a very special week for EltonJohnAllsongsList, that’s the “Live Duets” Week, first edition. It’s well know the endless list of Elton John’s duets with some of the best singers of the world: Luciano Pavarotti, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, etc. Some of his contributions to live charity events were duos or trios, like those fantastic “Rainforest Foundation”shows. I would like to chat a little about those performances... For this reason I have to bring on two very special guests for this Eltonite’s Day: from different sides of the world... two of the greatests. Hi Dixie Lily, Hi Laurent. Nice to “meet” you two and thank you very much for the acceptation, I am glad and happy to interview you..

But first... Could you tell us, please, who are you and where are you from?

Dixie Lily: Hi, My name is Nicole & I live in Sydney, Australia. I am 35 years old, married with 2 daughters (Rhiannah who's 15 & Ashleigh who's 2) I work parttime as a singing & drama teacher.

Laurent: I am Laurent, 38 years old (yesterday my Birthday, 16th July!), from France, near St Etienne, (do you remember the ASSE football team, the "greens" !)

I do! When did you became an Eltonite? Remember the first time you heard Elton's music and what moves you to buy his music?

Laurent: I became an Eltonite in 1987, when a friend of mine lend me his EJ Lps, little by little I like this music very much !

Dixie Lily: Back in 1973, my brother took me to see him in concert, I was less than 2 years old. I buy his music because, essentially it makes me happy, I feel joyous when I hear his voice :)

Nice. What was it like seeing Elton for the first time and how many concerts have you been? And also, could you tell us if you ever have been in touch with him, get a signed autograph or even, speak with him or with other member of his band?

Dixie Lily: Being so young I don't remember too much of the first concert, but I have seen him close to 60 times now in the US, England, New Zealand & all over Australia. I have met him once in Sydney back in 1990, I was talking to Davey Johnstone & Elton was driving off in his car. Davey introduced me as Nicky & Elton said to me, "Well Nickers, did you enjoy the show?" I nearly died. I have had about 25 items signed by him at concerts & have taken thousands of concert photos. I have also met different band members over the years.

Laurent: It was really amazing, seeing it for the first time in 1989 at Lyon, France, Halle Tony Garnier, 3 different costumes he wore !
At this time I saw him 20 times, I have been in touch with him, meeting him in front of the Ritz Hotel at Paris, make a photo with him and some autographs.

Wow people!!! Well, you know that’s the “Live Duets” week. Do you like duets, or prefer an Elton “Duet For One”? In that case, which song and which partner have Elton to duet with? Which Duet have not to be happened? Do you detested anyone?

Dixie Lily: I love that song Duet for one, but I don't particularly like the Duets cd or Elton singing duets. I think he should record a duet with Olivia Newton John.

Laurent: Oh yes, I like duets very much, "Donner pour donner" with France Gall of course, and "Don't let the sun..." with G.Michaël ; but perhaps a duet with Mylene Farmer will be possible ? or Celine Dion for example ?

Right. Elton became very popular in France since the "Blue Moves" album, especially at the time of "21 At 33" and "The Fox" albums. He also duetted with French star France Gall with two singles that became a huge success then; they reached the top of the charts I believe... did they? And Elton is a superstar in Australia, the country which buy more Elton’s records of the world, on a per population basis. So... Which are the people's favourite Elton's albums or songs, in your respective countries? And could you still hear Elton’s music in the radio, nowadays?

Laurent: Yes, Elton is very popular in France, let's remember "I'm still standing" and "Passengers" video clips will be released in the south of France ! and I could still hear Elton's music in the radio, especially RFM ou RTL2 here in France ; So the album "A single man" was popular here, and the single "Sacrifice" was very popular in France too, and of course "Candle in the wind" because it was in honour of Princess Diana, who died in Paris...

Dixie Lily: My favourite album is Caribou, followed closely by Captain Fantastic, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road & Sleeping With The Past. Australian radio really only play a few Elton classics (SNAFF, Your Song, Rocket Man etc) but they play them over & over again. Australians seem hesitant to give new or obscure Elton songs a listen & that's sad.

What do you think about those type of events, like “Prince’s Trust” or “Rainforest Foundation”, for example, where a selected group of big stars join on stage and sing together for a charity cause? Have you ever seen one of those? Which should be a great live event in your country, for which cause and which artists should participate on that event?

Dixie Lily: We have a lot of fundraising events for the environment, global warming, breast cancer etc with big name Australian artists but no international acts, I think songs for chraity are a bit overrated, but I did love Elton's version of Your Song for sports aid.

Laurent: Oh yes, I think it's important to collect founds, I was at the Lido,at a charity gala for Aids, in 2003, it was such a very nice moment, and concert of 2 hours, I can't forget this !

Which Elton’s appearance on a TV show you remember most, and why? Could you see Elton’s concerts on TV? And some interview with Elton? There is an old legend in my country that says a television paid lots of money to have Elton on their show but the TV shares were very low. They called the “effect Elton John” and it appears that the televisions have taken very seriously since then to bring on a big star...

Laurent: Elton at the Muppet show was hilarous ! and "An audience with EJ" too, he will be a very good TV compère ! I saw a lot of concerts and TV shows on TV and Dvds.

Dixie Lily: Elton's Thankyou Australia concert, televised back in 1984, I was at the concert & it holds so many good memories for me. I have over 100 dvd's of Elton in various concerts, interviews &tv shows from all over the world.

OK! What do you think about next step Elton should do? Recording an album with new material? Doing more musicals? When he should be retired?

Dixie Lily: I don't think he should ever retire, it keeps him young & vital, I would love a new album or a new musical but I think his next step should be to fly to Australia & play at my husbands birthday LOL

Laurent: Perhaps recording with a tendance group, funky perhaps ?, of course more musicals, I like it very much, and please Elton never retired !

Right! And which is your Elton's item that you really appreciate, for being hard to get or for the happiness you've got to have it?

Laurent: My pic with EJ signed !

Dixie Lily: My home is a shrine to Elton, every wall & floorspace is covered with Elton memoribilia. My most treasured possession are my 2 Elton pinball machines (Pinball Wizard & Captain Fantastic), it took me many years to find these in mint condition & lots of money to buy & have them shipped to my house but worth every penny. I look at them everyday & smile.

Fabulous!! And finally, could you tell me your five favourite Elton's songs in running order, for my AllSongsList?

Dixie Lily: GoodBye Yellow Brick Road, Ticking, Captain Fantastic, Funeral For a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding, Healing Hands

Laurent: Belfast / Bennie & the jets / Original sin / Levon / I'm still standing

Thank you very much. Would you want to add some observation or suggestion, or something you want to say to your other partner of the interview?

Laurent: I hope we will meet together at a concert, Dixie Lily, to speak about our mutual passion !

Dixie Lily: Nice to meet you Laurent, I will check out your website right now!!

Yes, you Laurent, you own one of the best Eltonite sites I’ve ever seen... better than youtube, I believe. That’s “Cold As Christmas” website. Could you explain us, please, what the website is about?

Laurent: Oh yes, and many thanks !, it still exists since 2002, "Cold As Christmas" was such a nice song, it's about me, my concerts, my items and many more ! of course it will be a pleasure to receive many stories of fans about their own concerts... their pics, and more... let's go to discover it !

And you, Dixie Lily, What your daughters think about Elton’s music? Have they other teen idols maybe? How do you manage to get them to Elton’s music?

Dixie Lily: They have no choice but to listen to him & love him!!!! We always have music playing in the house & car ( yes & sometimes it's not Elton!!) I hope I have brought them up with an appreciation of great music.

Thank you very much Nicole and Laurent, really a worth experience this interview. Wow!!! It was a funny thing and my great priviledge to meet you two. An honour you share your time with AllSongsList. I have no words, to tell thank you is just a little thing, you deserved more. Take care and good luck.

No comments: