The best moments of Elton John’s ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour

Elton John is set to make his Glastonbury debut as part of the farewell run

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Elton John’s ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour originally kicked off in 2018 before it was delayed several times due to COVID and a hip operation. Things resumed last year and a celebratory run around North America was brought to a close with a glorious pair of shows at California’s Dodger Stadium.

Now, John has set his sights on the UK and Europe, with the record-breaking tour set to conclude at Stockholm’s Tele2 Arena on July 8. Before that though, there’s a string of shows around the UK, a takeover of London’s O2 and a Glastonbury headline slot.


NME was at the first of John’s ten headline shows at London’s O2 Arena. Here are the five best moments from the already iconic ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour:

‘Bennie And The Jets’

It’s hard to command an arena from behind a piano, but from the opening hammer of ‘Bennie And The Jets’, Elton John had the undivided attention of every corner of London’s O2 Arena. The track may have been originally released in 1973 as part of ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ but fifty years later, it sounded as powerful as ever. Live, John’s free-wheeling piano-playing gave the track a spirited enthusiasm while his impressive vocals sounded better than ever. The bar was set high from the very start.

Elton’s enthusiasm

Speaking of enthusiasm, Elton John has played close to 300 shows on his ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour and there’s another three months of touring still to go. However, there wasn’t a single moment where John wasn’t giving it his all. When he wasn’t hammering the piano or getting caught up in sublime rock & roll breakdowns, John was triumphantly punching the air, waving to the crowd and looking like he was having the absolute time of his life. It was impossible not to do the same.

Elton John
Elton John CREDIT: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images

The Deep Cuts

Elton John has countless, timeless classics but the 23-track setlist for his ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour also allowed some of his lesser-known songs to shine. ‘Tumbleweed Connection’’s ‘Burn Down The Mission’ and ‘Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only The Piano Player’’s ‘Have Mercy On The Criminal’ were transformed into fiery rock and roll epics while the reflective ‘Levon’ (from 1971’s ‘Madman Across The Water’) sat perfectly between ‘Someone Saved My Life Tonight’ and ‘Candle In The Wind’.


‘Cold Heart’

Elton John is a living legend but in recent years, he’s refused to be defined by nostalgia. As well as championing exciting, interesting new acts like Rina Sawayama and Yard Act, he also collaborated with Dua Lipa on ‘Cold Heart’. Released in 2021, the disco-infused song gave John his eighth Number One UK single and during the ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour, it deservedly received one of the biggest reactions of the night.

The Grand Finale

After a joyful, celebratory and positive trip down memory lane, Elton John closed out his ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ show with a gorgeous, poignant rendition of ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’. “Thank you for making me feel special. I won’t ever forget you but I want to spend the rest of my life with my boys,” he explained before the track, which was backed by video clips of his own glorious career. I

It was the perfect way to round out a night that celebrated John’s impressive legacy. The whole show was performed before a giant frame, full of Easter Eggs and nods to various albums, shows and musicals John was involved in while the visuals for the show featured archive footage as well as clips from The Simpsons, Rocketman and various TV adverts.

At the end, John disappeared into the star-studded video wall behind the stage via a silver stair lift, an extravagant showman to the very end.

Elton John. Credit: Theo Wargo via Getty Images
Elton John performs live. CREDIT: Theo Wargo via Getty Images

Elton John tickets have sold this year for as low as 12 GBP at viagogo, the world’s largest ticket marketplace.

UK fans lead the way in ticket sales followed by Australia, Germany, and the US according to viagogo’s ticket sales insights. Fans from 100+ countries, from Fiji to Finland, Guatemala to Gibraltar, Singapore to South Africa, have bought tickets on their platform for 2023 performances to wish Elton John farewell.

Fans can buy and sell tickets for Elton John at global marketplace, viagogo here.

The remaining dates for Elton John’s ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour are below:

30 – The O2, London
31 – AO Arena, Manchester

02 – AO Arena, Manchester
03 – AO Arena, Manchester
06 – First Direct Arena, Leeds
08 – Utilita Arena, Birmingham
10 – Utilita Arena, Birmingham
11 – Utilita Arena, Birmingham
13 – P&J Live, Aberdeen
15 – P&J Live, Aberdeen
17 – The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
18 – The SSE Hydro, Glasgow

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