Elton John Reflects on 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,' Praises Aloe Blacc's 'The Man' (Video)

The album's re-release features covers of his hits by Ed Sheeran, Miguel, Hunter Hayes, The Band Perry, Emeli Sande, Fall Out Boy and more.
Dietmar Quistorf/University of Southern California
Elton John

Elton John first released Goodbye Yellow Brick Road forty years ago, and is celebrating the milestone with the double album's re-release, featuring covers of his hits by Ed Sheeran, Miguel, Hunter Hayes, The Band Perry, Emeli Sande, Fall Out Boy, Zac Brown Band and more.

"I'm not someone who normally looks back, I'm not someone who gets nostalgic, but I had to listen to this album because I have to do interviews about it," he told Matt Lauer in a Today interview. "It made me very emotional. I cried a little at it, because it reminded me of a time when I was very innocent. I hadn't done a drug."

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Now sober for twenty years, John said of his darker days with drugs and alcohol, "I don't blame anybody or anything. It was just me being inquisitive. 'Okay, I'll try it. I'll join in. I'll be part of the gang.' Bad decision. If I could go back again, I would never do it."

The two discussed the album's "Bennie and the Jets" and "Candle in the Wind," the latter of which John rewrote after Princess Diana's death. "Sometimes a song just keeps having a life. There's this track now by Aloe Blacc, his top single 'The Man' samples 'Your Song' -- I love that. For me, it's such a flattering thing for an artist to do, to sample your music ... A song is always relevant if it's a good song."

In a second part of the interview, which airs Tuesday morning, John spoke on his upcoming wedding plans to his longtime partner David Furnish. "We'll do it very quietly," John said, "but we will do it and it will be a joyous occasion and we will have our children." The couple have two kids together: Zachary, 3, and Elijah, 1.

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"I'm very proud of Britain and the laws that we've seen come into existence since we've been together," John said of the recent legalization of gay marriage in England. "Having our civil partnership was an incredible breakthrough for people that have campaigned for a long time — through the '60s and the '50s in England when it was so hard to be gay and hard to be open about it. And it was a criminal act. So for this legislation to come through is joyous, and we should celebrate it. We shouldn't just say, 'Oh, well we have a civil partnership. We're not going to bother to get married.' We will get married."

Watch the interview clip below:

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