Elton John Announces New Album ‘Diving Board’

Fans of Elton John who’ve been hoping for him to return to his early-’70s stripped-down format are about to get their wish. Earlier today (June 24), the legendary singer/pianist announced an official release date and track listing for his first solo album in seven years, The Diving Board. Out September 24, Elton says it’s “the album I’ve been waiting to make for decades.”

Elton’s last effort–2010’s duo album with Leon Russell, The Union–was produced by T Bone Burnett, who in recent years has produced for artists such as Elvis Costello, John Mellencamp, Robert Plant and Alison Krauss, B.B. King, and Gregg Allman. Elton has re-teamed with Burnett for The Diving Board.

The album was initially set for release last year, but the release was delayed (more than once) for promotional reasons. Elton took that extra time to write additional material and and give the collection, as he said at the time, a “tighter identity.”

The Diving Board features 12 new songs written by Elton and his longtime lyricist Bernie Taupin, as well as three piano interludes composed by Elton.  The album’s presale starts today on iTunes and on Elton’s official website. Those who pre-order will receive an instant download of the album’s premiere single, “Home Again.”

While Elton John’s albums over the years have featured lavish production, The Diving Board sees a return to the piano, bass and drums lineup that marked his introduction to worldwide audiences more than 40 years ago. (If you’re unfamiliar with Elton in such a stripped-down setting, check out his live album 11-17-70.)

“In many ways, I feel like I’m starting again, making records,” Elton explained in a press statement. “Several years ago when beginning to work with T Bone and being in the studio with Leon Russell for The Union, I had to ask myself, ‘What kind of music do I really want to make?’, and I realized that I had to go back to go forward again. I needed to strip away the excesses and get back to the core of what I do as an artist.  That’s what The Diving Board represents. I’m incredibly excited about every aspect of this album:  The performances, T Bone’s production, Bernie’s lyrics and the songs we’ve created. The Diving Board is the album I’ve been waiting to make for decades.”

As for Burnett, he has a personal reason for wanting to work with the artist in a stripped-down format. “I saw Elton at the Troubadour in 1970, in a legendary week of shows. Those shows never left me. A three piece band – piano, bass, and drums, like one enormous instrument – just killing it.  So we started from there. I wanted to be able to superimpose this recording over my memory of the sound and the wild intelligence of those shows. From that perspective, forty years down the road, The Diving Board is an album of music by a master at the peak of his artistic powers.”

The complete track listing for The Diving Board:

  1. Oceans Away
  2. Oscar Wilde Gets Out
  3. A Town Called Jubilee
  4. The Ballad of Blind Tom
  5. Dream #1
  6. My Quicksand
  7. Can’t Stay Alone Tonight
  8. Voyeur
  9. Home Again
  10. Take This Dirty Water
  11. Dream #2
  12. The New Fever Waltz
  13. Mexican Vacation (Kids In The Candlelight)
  14. Dream #3
  15. The Diving Board


— Brian Ives, Radio.com


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More From 104.1 Jack FM

Get The App
JACK's Crush Archive
JACK's Inside Track

Listen Live