By now, everyone with any kind of passing interest in pop music has heard about the upcoming Live 8 series of shows being organized by Bob Geldof, with the poverty fight-minded shows coming to various sites in Europe and the U.S.
It sounds promising, especially with Coldplay, U2, Paul McCartney, the Cure and Keane among the artists set to perform.
But I do want to share my thoughts on Elton John. Yes, he is legendary and all that. But my feeling is he is really consumed with himself and doesn't much care about others. I attended a Disney party in connection with the DVD release of the Lion King in October 2003 and he performed at the theater, and then was at the party afterwards. Of all the notables there, including comedian George Lopez, CCR frontman John Fogerty (who couldn't have been cooler) and others, Elton John was the only one who would not talk to everyday "normal" (meaning non-celebrity) people.
Elton John is going to perform at Live 8 for the simple fact it keeps him in the public eye. There is not a warmth to him, like when you see Bono going out to greet fans before a show and such. I haven't met a bunch of rockers outside my role as a pop scribe, but of those who I have, I can tell you Mark McGrath, Danny Elfman, John Fogerty, the members of the Smithereens and the guys in Offspring were so much cooler than Elton John. Maybe he was having a bad day? Then why did he go to the party after, just to sit at a table in a roped off area and have celebrities come by to worship him? I wish the "in crowd" among rockers would disown him. After all, isn't that what Live 8 is about? Helping the helpless?