The Simon Dupree and The Big Sound
with Elton John in Scotland.
Elton John tours Scotland with
Simon Dupree - 1967.
Simon Dupree and The Big Sound
had a tour of Scotland to do
but our keyboard player Eric was away sick.
Reg Dwight took his place for this tour of Scotland.
I call him Reg because that's who we knew him as.
We didn't know Reg before this, he was sent to us through an agency.
We had one afternoons practice, he made a few notes, and that was it, he knew our programme.
He was very talented and easy to get along with.
The talent as we know, has remained.
He was paid £25 a week for this tour .... !
On an out of tune piano at a guest house in Edinburgh,
Elton played for us what was to become songs from his first albums.
These were just provisional, and sounded a lot different when released.
Elton asked us if we would like to record any of the songs that he'd played.
Derek & Phil Shulman said 'No thanks Reg, we have enough material at the
Today Phil says he feels like the guy who refused to give The Beatles
a record contract.
We had a laugh when he said he was thinking about using the stage name
Elton John for himself !
( A mixture of Elton Dean and Long John Baldry from 'Bluesology',
a band Elton had once played for )
'He who laughs last' ....
When it was time for Elton to leave the band and Eric return
Elton John asked us and
our manager if he could stay.
We had all become good friends with Elton and would have preferred it if Elton
But our manager said we had to take Eric back.
In retrospect this was for the best.
Reg Dwight may never have become Elton John, and he might never have met Bernie
We did however remain friends with Elton, Ray Shulman
in particular kept in touch.
Elton John wrote and played on one of our tracks that was never released in
called 'I'm Going Home'. The track is however on the new Anthology CD, which
was released in March 2004, called 'Part Of My Past'.
Bernie Taupin wrote the
Elton John also plays on the tracks 'Laughing Boy From Nowhere' and 'Give It
Our gigs with Elton John in Scotland ( roughly )
Glasgow and area. ( Three nights )
Brodick Island of Arran.
Two days and nights,
over a weekend.
We stayed at a small hotel in Lamlash near Brodick.
During the day on the hotels run downed tennis court we played knock-about tennis,
or kicked a football around. Elton was a keen Watford fan even way back then.
During the day we also hired a rowing boat and hand fishing lines and caught
a few fish.
We took these fish back to the hotel and asked if they could be cooked for our
It was amusing to see the faces of the hotel staff drop, more bloody tourists
At that time of year the 'Island of Arran' was a real magical place.
It was around Fort William the photographs
were taken. Inverness, Aberdeen, Stonehaven, Arbroath, Dundee, Perth, Stirling, Falkirk.