Elton John Songs In The ‘Rocketman’ Film: Everything You Need To Know

The forthcoming Elton John biopic recounts the legendary star’s rise to fame, but what Elton John songs are in the ‘Rocketman’ film? Find out here.

Published on

Photo: Paramount Pictures

Named after his iconic 1972 hit, Rocketman is the forthcoming biopic that tells of the early career and breakthrough years of Elton John. Directed by Bohemian Rhapsody’s Dexter Fletcher, the film stars Taron Egerton as the iconic musician, with Jamie Bell as his long-term songwriting partner Bernie Taupin. With the biopic focusing on such a key period in Elton’s life, there should be no shortage of classic Elton John songs in the Rocketman film.

Already hotly-anticipated, Rocketman is due to arrive in cinemas in the UK on 24 May and will open in the US a week later. Part of the initial excitement surrounding the film comes from Elton himself, who has enthusiastically endorsed Egerton’s performance. As Rocketman’s musical director, Giles Martin, put it: “Elton said, ‘I don’t think I’ve heard anyone sing my songs better than Taron.’”

Listen to the Rocketman soundtrack right now, and scroll down to find out more about the Elton John songs in the Rocketman film.

Elton John Songs In The Rocketman film: Everything You Need To Know

‘Your Song’

First appeared on: Elton John
First released: 1970
Chart placement: UK No.7 / US No.8
A staple of Elton John’s self-titled second album, ‘Your Song’ was originally released as the B-side of his US single ‘Take Me To The Pilot’. US DJs, however, preferred ‘Your Song’, replacing it as the A-side and rewarding Elton with first ever US Top 10 hit.

‘Rocket Man (I Think It’s Going To Be A Long Long Time)’

First appeared on: Honky Château
First released: 1972
Chart placement: UK No.2 / US No.6
Carrying echoes of David Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’ (also produced by Gus Dudgeon), the yearning, space-travel-related ballad ‘Rocket Man’ remains a staple of Elton John’s live set. In 2018, it was awarded a gold disc in the UK in recognition of having sold 400,000 digital downloads.

‘Bennie And The Jets’

First appeared on: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
First released: 1973
Chart placement: UK No.37 / US No.1
Confusingly, ‘Bennie And The Jets’ is spelt ‘Benny’ on the sleeve of the single and the Goodbye Yellow Brick Road tracklisting, but ‘Bennie’ on the label of the original vinyl release. Either way, it remains one of Elton John’s most famous songs, given a defining performance at 1985’s Live Aid.

‘Tiny Dancer’

First appeared on: Madman Across The Water
First released: 1972
Chart placement: US No.41
Though it was never officially released as a single in the UK, ‘Tiny Dancer’ still eventually went gold there after it officially sold over 400,000 copies. The song also enjoyed a boost in popularity after it featured on the Grammy Award-winning soundtrack for the 2000 comedy-drama Almost Famous.

‘The Bitch Is Back’

First appeared on: Caribou
First released: 1974
Chart placement: UK No.15 / US No.4
Also the opening track from his fourth album, Caribou, ‘The Bitch Is Back’ featured a lyric parodying the celebrity lifestyle that Elton John had adopted on his rise to stardom. A frequent live favourite, the song ranks highly among the star’s best hard rock cuts.

‘I Want Love’

First appeared on: Songs From The West Coast
First released: 2001
Chart placement: UK No.9
Elton’s 26th studio album, Songs From The West Coast, won widespread critical approval and saw him return to his piano-based roots. One of its key tracks, the commanding ballad ‘I Want Love’, was nominated for a Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance in 2002.

‘Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting)’

First appeared on: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
First released: 1973
Chart placement: UK No.7 / US No.12
One of Elton’s most raucous rockers, notable for his Jerry Lee Lewis-esque piano pounding, ‘Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting)’ has also been covered by artists as diverse as Queen, The Who and Fall Out Boy.

‘Thank You For All Your Loving’

First appeared on: I’ve Been Loving You EP
First released: 1968
Chart placement: n/a
One of Elton’s earliest songs, ‘Thank You For All Your Loving’ is also one of his hardest to track down officially, as it first appeared on an EP released in Portugal only through the Philips label. Unusually, the song was co-written with former bandmate Caleb Quaye, rather than Bernie Taupin.

‘Border Song’

First appeared: Elton John
First released: 1970
Chart placement: US No.92 / Canada No.34
Elton’s self-titled second album is more famous for housing his breakthrough hit, ‘Your Song’. However, ‘Border Song’ is significant too, as its Top 40 Canadian success marks his first ever chart appearance in any country. Aretha Franklin’s version of the song, ‘Border Song (Holy Moses)’, was also a US Top 40 hit in December 1970.

‘Rock And Roll Madonna’

First appeared: single A-side
First released: 1970
Chart placement: n/a
Originally a standalone UK single that was later included on the rarities collection Rare Masters, ‘Rock And Roll Madonna’ is, as its title suggests, a straight-ahead rock’n’roll song, with the addition of live effects akin to ‘Bennie And The Jets’.


First appeared on: Tumbleweed Connection
First released: 1970
Chart placemen: n/a
A key track from Elton’s acclaimed, Americana-flavoured third album, ‘Amoreena’ was named after Elton John’s god-daughter. It wasn’t a single, but it famously accompanied the opening credits of the 1975 crime drama Dog Day Afternoon, which starred Al Pacino.

‘Crocodile Rock’

First appeared on: Don’t Shoot Me, I’m Only The Piano Player
First released: 1972
Chart placement: UK No.1 / UK No.1
Elton’s first US No.1 hit, ‘Crocodile Rock’ featured a lyric that took a nostalgic look at rock’n’roll’s early days. A song with across-the-board appeal, it spent three weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 in February 1973. The first single to be released on the MCA label in the UK, ‘Crocodile Rock’ also topped the British Top 40.

‘Take Me To The Pilot’

First appeared on: Elton John
First released: 1970
Chart placement: n/a
The flipside to ‘Your Song’ and another key song from Elton’s self-titled second album, the sturdy ‘Take Me To The Pilot’ became a staple of the star’s live set during the 70s and was given a full-scale orchestral makeover on 1987’s Live In Australia With The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.


First appeared on: Honky Château
First released: 1972
Chart placement: n/a
Arguably the album that ensured Elton John’s longevity, 1972’s Honky Château was the first of seven consecutive US chart-topping albums from Elton. It featured two of his legend-enshrining tracks, ‘Rocket Man’ and ‘Honky Cat’, but ‘Hercules’ – which was prepared as the album’s third single, but not eventually released – also remains a must-hear song.

‘Don’t Go Breaking My Heart’

First appeared on: single A-side
First released: 1976
Chart placement: UK No.1 / US No. 1
Remarkably, this evergreen Elton John hit began life as an affectionate Motown pastiche, which Elton and Bernie Taupin wrote under the pseudonyms Ann Orson and Carte Blanche, with the intention of offering it to Dusty Springfield. Instead, Elton’s own version – a duet with Kiki Dee – scored a transatlantic No.1 and won the 1976 Ivor Novello Award.

‘Honky Cat’

First appeared on: Honky Château
First released: 1976
Chart placement: UK No.31 / US No.8
Honky Château was the first Elton John album to feature his road band, including bassist Dee Murray and drummer Nigel Olsson, and they strut their stuff in fine style on the album’s lead cut – and first single – the New Orleans funk-flavoured ‘Honky Cat’, produced by Gus Dudgeon.

‘Pinball Wizard’

First appeared on: Tommy (Original Film Soundtrack)
First released: 1976
Chart placement: UK: No.7
Elton performed The Who’s ‘Pinball Wizard’ in director Ken Russell’s 1975 film adaptation of the legendary 1969 concept album Tommy. Later released as a single, Elton’s version uses piano as the song’s centrepiece and features additional lyrics that Townshend wrote especially for the movie version.

‘Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me’

First appeared on: Caribou
First released: 1974
Chart placement: UK No.6 / US No.2
Pepped up by a Del Newman horn arrangement and backing vocal contributions from Beach Boys Carl Wilson and Bruce Johnston, ‘Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me’ was initially released as Caribou’s first single, in May 1974. Re-recorded as a live duet with George Michael, the song later gained Elton a transatlantic No.1 in 1991.

‘Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word’

First appeared on: Blue Moves
First released: 1976
Chart placement: UK No.1
This elegiac, chart-topping ballad also featured prominently in the 1977 Paul Newman movie, Slap Shot. In 2002, it hit No.1 when Elton re-recorded the track as a collaboration with English boy band Blue.

‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’

First appeared on: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
First released: May 1973
Chart placement: UK No.6 / US No.2
A certified soft-rock classic accompanied by a sumptuous Del Newman string arrangement, ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ remains one of Elton’s most iconic songs. He later recorded it as a duet with Billy Joel for 2000’s One Night Only: The Greatest Hits Live At Madison Square Garden and still regularly features the song in his live set.

‘I’m Still Standing’

First appeared on: Too Low For Zero
First released: 1983
Chart placement: UK No.4 / US No.12
Widely believed to have been written in reaction to the rise of newer musical genres such as post-punk and new romanticism in the early 80s, the defiant ‘I’m Still Standing’ reaffirmed Elton John’s status at pop’s top table, and its parent album, Too Low For Zero, went on to become his biggest-selling album of the decade.

‘(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again’ (with Taron Egerton)

First appeared on: Rocketman (Music From The Motion Picture)
First released: 2019
Chart placement: n/a
Produced by Giles Martin and Greg Kurstin, and written specifically for the Rocketman soundtrack, the uplifting, Motown-esque ‘(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again’ features a duet between Elton and the film’s star, Taron Egerton, and plays over the film’s closing credits. Speaking of Egerton’s vocal abilities, Elton recently said in Rolling Stone: “I trusted Taron and Giles Martin to do what they needed to do, artistically, and listening back I’ve been astonished with the results.”

Format: Union Jack flagUK English


  1. John

    June 11, 2019 at 11:44 pm

    Why did they spell the film’s title Rocketman when the song is spelled, Rocket Man on the song and sheet music? I’ve yet to find an answer. Inquiring minds want to know.

  2. Stack

    June 26, 2019 at 2:20 am

    sorry, don’t know. i’m guessing to differentiate (sp?) from the song; i.e. he’s the rocketman vs the song title. been a fan since the 70’s (yes, i’m old!) and loved the flick. i bought his greatest hits album for my daughter when she was 10–she’s now 24, so, we had to go. needless to say, i bought most of the albums that had the ‘hits’ on them, as well as a few others. one of my favs is the live album w/ the melbourne australia symphony orchestra– wow!!!!! highly recommend! and, if you’re a fan, see the movie!

  3. Tamsen Fox

    July 7, 2019 at 8:37 am

    I REALLY loved the film. It was sensationally well done. Love the man since before fame when I recognized him in a convenience store in London and suggested he go to Hawaii to perform. Of course he did, and was a big hit (Shaka).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

uDiscover Music - Back To Top
uDiscover Music - Back To Top