Rocket Man: Number Ones

Elton John

Island, 2007

REVIEW BY: Jeff Clutterbuck

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 04/02/2007

I love Elton John’s music, but when a fan asks the question of why does the world need another Elton greatest hits, it does not bode well.

This is not an overview of Elton’s best work, not by a long shot. In fact, as far greatest hits collections go, it’s not even close to being the best. Rocket Man owes its existence to The Beatles’ 1. That album has resulted in the past six years or so seeing a multitude of “number one” collections hit the market. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Rocket Man is simply Elton’s record company’s response.

The actual music on Rocket Man is not terrible by any means; most of Captain Fantastic’s biggest hits are featured. To my knowledge, all of his number one hits from both the U.S and the U.K. are included, actually clocking in at a lower number than one would expect from John. “Can You Feel The Love Tonight,” “Crocodile Rock” and “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” all can be found on Rocket Man. But ask any serious Elton fan if those are their favorites and I guarantee you the answer would be no.

If this was Elton’s first greatest hits in a few years, I might understand this disc being released. But it was only four years ago that his Greatest Hits 1970-2002 was released. That was a double disc set that contained practically all of Elton’s hits. In fact, with the exception of the cover of “ Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds,” every one of the tracks here is featured on that release.

While I appreciate that the majority of the songs present are from John’s classic period, an argument could be made for the inclusion of his ‘80s material. There are two songs post-1976, and while Elton may not have maintained the same quality in the following decade, there were still some classics that he turned out. “I’m Still Standing,” or “I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues” easily could have been part of the track list for Rocket Man.

The music in itself is not terrible by any means; this is pop music at its best. However, the fact remains that one could easily pick up various other greatest hits collections and get a better sampling of John’s material. Start with the 1970-2002 set and just move backward, but only get this if you’re budget-conscious or love only these songs.

Rating: C+

User Rating: C


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