orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

March 14, 2014

Elton John sets Ford Arena records with performance

Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader

BEAUMONT — Wednesday's concert featuring Elton John was one for the record books.

Sir Elton John's concert on Wednesday, March 12 at Ford Arena in Beaumont set three records for the venue, all of which may stand for years to come.

Ford Park management announced on Thursday that Elton John's performance broke the venue's record for attendance and for highest grossing performance, along with fastest selling show.

The Elton John concert surpassed the attendance mark of approximately 8,600 at the 2010 Jason Aldean concert as approximately 8,900 fans filled the arena for Wednesday's show.

The event also became the highest grossing concert ever held at Ford Arena as the Elton John concert surpassed the previous record of another icon, Cher, which was set in 2004.

Elton John's concert also broke the record of fastest selling event, which was also set in 2004, by teen sensation Hilary Duff.

The concert, presented by Live Nation in Houston, was everything fans could hope as Elton John performed 27 songs in slightly more than two-and-a-half hours.

John's voice was in fine form as he delivered trademark classics such as “Bennie and the Jets,” “Philadelphia Freedom,” “Candle in the Wind,” “I Guess that's Why They Call It the Blues,” and “Rocket Man.”

Although John admitted he had recently battled a bout of bronchitis, his voice sounded as strong as one might hope and his skills on the piano remain undiminished.

Touring in support of his September 2013 release, “The Diving Board,” John performed new material such as “Oceans Away” and “Home Again,” both of which were well received and show why John is a living legend in the music business.

Songs which were a treat to hear and somewhat unexpected included “All the Girls Love Alice,” and “Hey Ahab.”

No Elton John performance would be complete without tunes such as “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” “I'm Still Standing,” “Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me,” and “The Bitch is Back,” all of which had cell phones lighting the arena and people dancing in their seats or the aisles.

He concluded the evening with trademark hits such as “Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting,” “Your Song,” and “Crocodile Rock.”