I’M STILL STANDING
Elton John Set to Retire After 50 Years on the Road
The stage legend will reportedly announce his retirement from touring at the age of 70 so that he can take his kids to school.
Elton John is preparing to hang up his enormous glittery cape for the last time.
British newspaper The Daily Mirror reports that the 70-year-old singer—known for hits such as “Tiny Dancer,” “Rocket Man,” and “Your Song”—will retire from touring after one final world tour.
John will reportedly announce the decision at what’s been billed—in fittingly extravagant style—as a joint press conference hosted simultaneously in both London and New York on Wednesday.
The Daily Mirror claims that John’s decision to retire was made after he spent time in intensive care last year when he fell ill in South America with what his spokesperson called a “harmful and unusual bacterial infection.”
He also spoke earlier in 2017 about the prospect of retiring from touring to spend more time with his two sons.
John is one of the highest-selling musicians in history, with more than 300 million album sales, and has toured tirelessly since his debut album in 1969. He became a music legend alongside his writing partner Bernie Taupin.
His tribute to Princess Diana after her death in 1997—a rewrite of his classic song “Candle in the Wind”—remains the world’s second-highest-selling single of all time, behind Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas,” which was released in 1942.
John also become infamous for his many extravagant and costumes on his tours, including those that dressed him up as Donald Duck and in an enormous Louis XIV costume which, from afar, made him look like a huge enchanted cloud.
He told the BBC in March 2017 that he would be deciding whether or not to retire from touring in the near future, but stressed that he wouldn’t give up music altogether, hinting that he may continue to release music and perform stand-alone shows in the future.
“There will be a decision made in the next six months, probably,” he said. “I will want to stop touring—not playing, but touring. I want to spend time with my boys.”
John and his husband, David Furnish, have two sons, Zachary and Elijah.
Speaking in 2012, John said of his children: “I’m going to keep working. When Zachary goes to school, that’s a different thing. I want to take him to school and I want to pick him up—I don’t want to miss that part of his childhood.”
John is due to finish the last date of his current residency in Las Vegas, dubbed The Million Dollar Piano, on May 19.