For me, most familiar songs conjure up a place.
The summer before my Junior year of high school, I had a best friend whose working parents left a daily household chores list, to be completed before my friend was allowed to go outdoors and enjoy the delights of the nearby lake, where my family had a summer cottage. The list was meant for my friend and her sister to complete together but, somehow, her older sister always seemed to manage to weasel out of participation in the lion's share of the tasks. So, if I wanted my pal to be able to swim, kayak and sail with me, I had to pitch in and help.
On the very first day I arrived for summer vacation, my friend unwrapped a recent purchase--the latest Elton John album, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy. It was this record that revolved on the turntable in the big console stereo cabinet while we folded laundry and dusted nicknacks, or on rainy days when we stayed in and played cards or other board games on the kitchen table. When not otherwise occupied, we sang along, performing the songs with kitchen implements standing in for microphones. We practically wore that record out.
My friend and and I stayed in touch for many years, even though our summers together were not to continue. We both bought every Elton John record and critiqued the songs in (actual handwritten) letters, right through college. Eventually, the correspondence ended, and now my old friend and I seldom hear from one another. Still, whenever I hear "Someone Saved My Life Tonight" I'm transported to that kitchen, with its checkered linoleum tiles, as we dance barefoot in cutoff shorts singing into spatulas.
Elton John is one superstar I've never seen live in concert. I hope to remedy that during his 2014 Tour. I'm thinking I ought to look up my old friend, and see if she'd like to go with me.
Source: Elton John - Someone Saved My Life Tonight (solo live 1976) YouTube 2013
Elton John 2014 Tour Setlist
Individual concerts vary, of course, but here's the set list from Elton John's recent appearance at Madison Square Garden in December 2013.
- Funeral for a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding
- Bennie and the Jets
- Candle in the Wind
- Grey Seal
- Tiny Dancer
- Holiday Inn
- Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters
- Philadelphia Freedom
- Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
- Rocket Man (I Think It's Going to Be a Long, Long Time)
- Hey Ahab
- I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues
- The One
- Oceans Away
- Someone Saved My Life Tonight
- Sad Songs (Say So Much)
- All the Girls Love Alice
- Home Again
- Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me
- I'm Still Standing
- The Bitch Is Back
- Your Sister Can't Twist (But She Can Rock 'n Roll)
- Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting
- Your Song
- Crocodile Rock