'Rocketman' stars on why Elton John's music is still relevant today

Gwynne Watkins
·Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

The song that inspired the title of the new Elton John biopic, "Rocket Man," was a triple-platinum single in 1972, and probably gets just as much airplay today. The musical film Rocketman stars Taron Egerton (Kingsman: The Secret Service) as the beloved singer-songwriter, who wrestled quite a few personal demons on his way to becoming the legend he is at age 72. On the red carpet for the premiere, Yahoo Entertainment asked the stars, director and John's real-life loved ones to tell us why songs like “Tiny Dancer,” “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” have never stopped being relevant. Watch the video above.

Egerton, who did his own singing and spandex-jumpsuit-wearing for the film, said that the "spirit and passion" of John's music is impossible to deny. "[When] you care about what you do, and bring your experience of the world to your work, I think then it's got the potential to be really timeless," he told Yahoo Entertainment.

72nd Cannes Film Festival - Screening of the film "Rocketman" out of competition - Red Carpet Arrivals - Cannes, France, May 16, 2019. Elton John poses with Taron Egerton. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe
Elton John and Taron Egerton at the Rocketman screening at the 72nd Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2019. (Photo: REUTERS/Stephane Mahe)

Jamie Bell, who plays John's longtime lyricist Bernie Taupin, talked about the range of emotion in the songs. "Elton is someone who can just put so much vulnerability into his music," he said. "It's emotional. It's also joyous as well. He's got a very specific gift, him and Bernie."

The real Taupin said that the connection between the songs and the listeners has always been important to him. "Just the simple fact that people love it, and it's still relevant, is all that matters to me," he said.

John's proud husband David Furnish, a producer on Rocketman, called John and Taupin's songs "beautiful modern poetry, adding, "They're very evocative, and they touch people's lives in a lot of different ways and people can really connect with them on a lot of different levels."

As director Dexter Fletcher put it, "He's been around 50 years, he's been writing his incredible songs… they're all in our DNA somewhere."

Rocketman opens in theaters on May 31.

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