The John DeBella Show

Weekdays 5:30am–9:00am

Fifty years ago today, Elton John took the stage at The Troubadour in Los Angeles, for the first night of a six-date residency. He was a little-known 23-year-old pop singer. When the show ended, Elton was a sensation.

The performance was attended by stars such as Neil Diamond (who introduced him), Quincy Jones, Brian Wilson and Mike Love of the Beach Boys, Don Henley, Randy Newman, David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash. Elton’s set included songs off his debut album, in addition to many yet unreleased tracks like “Your Song,” from his then forthcoming album Elton John. The concert was highlighted by a rave review from the Los Angeles Times’s music critic, Robert Hilburn, and has since been heralded as one of the greatest concerts of the rock era.

Watch a performance of it here, then read Elton talk about it in his own words below…

Elton John writes about how the Troubadour changed his life

In 1970, I kept a diary. Fifty years on, reading it makes for an intriguing study in contrasts. At the start of the year, I was 22 years old. I was still a virgin. I was one half of a songwriting partnership with my best friend, Bernie Taupin.