Bernie Taupin

  • Date Jan 1, 1987
  • Total Length 24:14
  • Collection King Biscuit
Liner Notes

Though recorded in order to promote his solo album, Tribes, this interview has enough material about his songwriting process and his opinions on other musicians (both as artists and as people) to make this a timeless representation of the man behind Elton John's lyrics.

00:00 - Preconceived notions of how a song should sound, ballads vs. up-tempo pieces
00:55 - Writing lyrics as an artist, playing guitar to aid in writing
02:05 - How his writing has matured over the years, hopefully aging gracefully
04:25 - Is "Friend of the Flag" autobiographical? Patriotism and values
05:45 - Notoriety and recognition, being in the spotlight, getting mobbed in public
07:25 - The double-edged sword of his affiliation with Elton John
08:30 - Assembling a band of friends for the record, going back to his roots, being treated as a new artist
09:40 - Making another record after Tribe / possibility of playing live
10:20 - Native American theme on the record, what the word "tribe" means to him
11:35 - The Americana of Tumbleweed Connection
13:00 - Writing from the first person point of view, taking on the role of characters in his songs
14:40 - Alternative career plans / getting into songwriting, actually having a record out
16:00 - Anticipation and excitement for the record / going to the record store
17:00 - "Billy Fury" as the ideal of a 70's power pop rock star in England
18:30 - Working with (and being friends with) Alice Cooper
19:30 - The Band may just be the greatest group of all time
20:25 - Respecting the lyrics of Elvis Costello, King of America
20:55 - Van Morrison as his solo singer idol
21:15 - Personal feelings about John Lennon
21:50 - Being buddies with Eric Clapton
22:20 - Writing the lyrics before the music