Elton John is retiring from the road after his upcoming three-year global tour, capping nearly 50 years on stages around the world, and says he’s hoping to go out “with a bang.”
“I’ve had a good run, I think you’d admit that,” John said Wednesday. He added that he wanted to “leave people thinking, ‘I saw the last tour and it was fantastic.”‘
The 70-year-old singer, pianist and composer announced the Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour at an event in New York, saying he wants to spend more time with his family.
John is married to Toronto native David Furnish, and the couple have two young children.
“My priorities now are my children and my husband and my family,” he said. “This is the end.”
The charismatic performer’s website lists two concerts in Toronto (Sept. 25-26), as well as shows in Ottawa (Sept. 28), Quebec City (Sept. 29) and Montreal (Oct. 4). Tickets go on sale Feb. 2.
He was recently in Canada for a pair of November shows in Ontario cities Kingston and St. Catharines.
John, whose hits include Your Song and Candle in the Wind, has won five Grammys, an Oscar and a Golden Globe for The Lion King, a Tony Award for Aida and received a Kennedy Center Honor.
Vegas residency drawing to a close
John several weeks ago announced he’d be winding up his Las Vegas residency in May. The Million Dollar Piano show in Vegas will close after some 200 performances in six years.
At the Grammy Awards on Sunday in New York City, John is to perform alongside Miley Cyrus and will collect the President’s Merit Award.
It’s not his first honour from the Grammys. He also received the Legend Award for lifetime achievement in 2000 and that same year was named its MusiCares Person of the Year for his philanthropic efforts, which include raising hundreds of millions through his Elton John AIDS Foundation.
On Jan. 30, the I’m Still Standing: Elton John tribute concert is taking place at Madison Square Garden featuring guest Cyrus, Miranda Lambert, John Legend, Kesha and Sam Smith, to be broadcast on CBS in the U.S. later in the year.
John launched his first tour in 1970 and boasts having performed over 4,000 times in more than 80 countries. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.
He has suffered several medical setbacks of late, including a bacterial infection last year that he contracted during a South American tour and an E. coli bacterial infection in 2009. He’s also suffered appendicitis and has been fitted with a pacemaker.
From 1970-76, John released 10 original studio albums and seven consecutive chart toppers.
He has sold more than 300 million albums.