Elton John Says Dua Lipa Is 'So Smart' and 'Grounded' That She Didn't Need His Advice
David M. Benett/Getty Dua Lipa and Elton John | CREDIT: DAVID M. BENETT/GETTY
Elton John is singing Dua Lipa's praises!
While chatting with PEOPLE on the red carpet of his 31st Annual Academy Awards Viewing Party on Sunday, the 75-year-old music icon said that Lipa, 27, hardly needed his direction when the two collaborated on "Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)" in 2021.
"She didn't really need that much advice," John said. "She's so smart, and she's so grounded, and so in touch with what's happening. She's a delight to be with."
Added the "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" singer: "I don't really need to give her any advice. She's doing really, really well."
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Peggy Sirota for Variety Elton John and Dua Lipa
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John and his husband, David Furnish, first met Lipa at an AIDS Foundation event, and they later took the pop star out to dinner to present the idea of working together.
The duo's song, which is an updated take on John's 1972 classic "Rocket Man," gave the singer his first British chart-topper in 16 years.
After hitting No. 1 in their native England, "Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)" also hit No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States. The song was the first single off John's collaborative album, The Lockdown Sessions.
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Last fall, the pair graced the cover of Variety's Hitmakers issue, where they opened up about their close bond and the ways in which the stars aligned to get them into the studio together.
"I adore her. She is incredibly talented — absolutely brilliant — and so professional. It's a pleasure to be around someone who is so young, has done so much already and is so humble," John said of Lipa. "She is also great fun, and we get on like a house on fire."
John has a history of mentoring young singers, including Ed Sheeran and Sam Fender, and he told Variety that his desire to help up-and-coming stars can be traced back to when he first came to the U.S. and received well-wishes from stars like Neil Diamond, Leon Russell, Brian Wilson and George Harrison.
"It was so kind for all of those people that I'd idolized growing up to take the time to say, 'Well done,' " he said. "It kind of ratified what I was doing. I was so blown away by it and so touched, and it's been in my DNA ever since, that you must always ring up someone if they are doing good work."