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Elton John — Sixty Years On
Album: Elton John
Avg rating:
7.4

Your rating:
Total ratings: 2761









Released: 1970
Length: 4:30
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Who'll walk me down to church when I'm sixty years of age?
When the ragged dog they gave me has been ten years in the grave
And señorita play guitar, play it just for you
My rosary has broken and my beads have all slipped through

You've hung up your great coat and you've laid down your gun
You know the war you fought in wasn't too much fun
And the future you're giving me holds nothing for a gun
I've no wish to be living sixty years on, on, on

Yes I'll sit with you and talk let your eyes relive again
I know my vintage prayers would be very much the same
And Magdelena plays the organ, plays it just for you
Your choral lamp that burns so low when you are passing through

And the future you're giving me holds nothing for a gun
I've no wish to be living sixty years on

Here I am
When I'm sixty years of age
Here I am
In the land of the morning star (Sixty years on)
Here I am
When I'm sixty years of age
Here I am
In the land of the morning star (Sixty years on)

Here I am
When I'm sixty years of age
Here I am
In the land of the morning star (Sixty years on)
Here I am
When I'm sixty years of age
Here I am
In the land of the morning star (Sixty years on)
Comments (436)add comment
And I was thinking that I was listening to a harpy cover of Coldplay's Clocks when this song started :)
 Ropes wrote:
No. It's not. You'll see.
 
 bigbobbybubba wrote:


This is so ignorant.
 
Ahhhh yes....the insolence of the young.  At that point nobody wants to live to be old.  It seems more like a horror show visited on the unforutnate.  I know this because, it's what I, too, felt and thought.  More or less.  

But these days?  I say give me 60 more years.  Please?  🤣

Highlow
American Net'Zen
Oh lord. Maybe it would be better if people in their early twenties didn't try to write melodrama about what it's like to be "sixty years on". Trust me, it's really not so bad.
 AndyJ wrote:


We -are- that much healthier and in better shape.   Our parents did not have antibiotics growing up. Their water was not as pure. They did not have the anti-virals or vitamins in everything. They did not spend as much time running about in our underwear outdoors.  They bequeathed us a very healthy world. We didn't notice when the dying seemed to end in the 70s.  As a child I went to many funerals for family, friends, relatives, adults and children. 

Now, we annoying. We're running about; having sex, exercising, eating healthy, spending, spending, spending. Our parents didn't have the ability or wherewithal to do any of these things.   The lessons of the songs still speak to the loneliness of old age. Then and now the old are very lonely.  TV is not a companion and the internet only simulates human relationships.   We have made it so we can live longer, healthier and lonelier.   Did we win-?

 

This is so ignorant.
 bluefrog wrote:
I think about this all the time.  It seems so consistent (if you aren't Neil Young or Bob Dylan).  No clue.  Btw, the music of young people is so often so good.  And the lyrics, as in this case about a decrepit 60 year old, are often really dumb.
 

One of the few Elton songs I like.
Ouch... I’m past 60 years, way past...
 acolt wrote:
I grew up on the live version with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and I have that one rated ahead of this. It sounds more, I don't know, urgent? Soulful? The increased age and gravel Elton has in the live version just rings truer.
 
there is a good life after 60.  Keep listening to RP
 doobes wrote:
Early EJ was simply sublime.  Later stuff, not so much.
 

True about so many bands and singers, not all, but the majority.
I've often wondered why.  Do they just get comfortable ? run out of ideas ?  Find it more difficult to take risks ?
Early EJ was simply sublime.  Later stuff, not so much.
I grew up on the live version with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and I have that one rated ahead of this. It sounds more, I don't know, urgent? Soulful? The increased age and gravel Elton has in the live version just rings truer.
 RobN wrote:


I've lived through this scenario 4x over now, and I fear that it going to repeat itself with me.

It's a terrifying prospect.
 
maybe it doesn't have to be this way ?
Beautiful and moving.  My eldest brother has just passed away age 83 (18 years ahead of me).  RIP Robin.
Having just turned 64, this packs a lot more meaning than it used to...
Nobody wants to be livin' (at) 60 years on....

Oh really?  

I dunno about that.  From where I sit I'd like another 60 years, please.   So long as I keep my health and, more importantly, my mind of course. 

Because while I am no spring chicken I still retain a desire to see/know what's around that next bend in the road.  So while I have my health, my mind, and am no burden on others, I say let's keep on truckin' on. 

I plan to keep goin' until I can't.  So excuse me there's a bend up ahead....

Highlow
American Net'Zen
"You've hung up your great coat and you've laid down your gun
You know the war you fought in wasn't too much fun
And the future you're giving me holds nothing for a gun..."

I've always been disappointed with that line. Seems like Bernie phoned it in. Or used it as a placeholder, then never went back and reworked it. Just seems too trite, maybe?

But that is nit-picking. My minor disappointment doesn't stop me from listening to it over and over.
From that first discordant hum, dark and brooding, the song is a classic. 
c.
 Grayson wrote:
.... So they age out alone. In front of their TV sets for a friend and companion. It's horrifying, really. When you see it happen to someone you know. There is no "fix" after a certain point. So you adjust their satellite dish if it's going wonky on 'em, mess with this or that, help them with the remote controls, yet again, and leave as soon as you possibly can do so... without being too impolite about it all. 
 

I've lived through this scenario 4x over now, and I fear that it going to repeat itself with me.

It's a terrifying prospect.
Amazing that this song is 50 years old. Still so beautiful and spectacularly timeless.
 wolverine wrote:
Beautiful, but i prefer the version on Live in Australia.
 
I agree, but I also think most of the tracks on that album were his best renditions - lucky sods who actually got to see him perform them live!  Any RP listeners out there who were there and are still here?
Beautiful, but i prefer the version on Live in Australia.
 Grayson wrote:
 

 
I live with one of these.

I have to force myself to interact with him.

TBI and now more neuro problems.

Such a waste of an artistic talent.

10 (ten) of course!
Elton John before he became a parody of Elton John. He was a great one once upon a time.
60 - Elton, I'm 60 - You're 72 and still Rockin'
Shit, for a second there I thought this was Led Zeppelin...
 Grayson wrote:
 
 
Horrifying indeed.  But I know what you're talking about.  It's sad, really.  There but for the grace of god go I, eh?  

Anyway...I wonder how 'ol Sir Elton feels about this song, now that he's on the north end of that 60 years on point.  Funny how time can change a perspective, eh?  

Highlow
American Net'Zen
 Tomasni wrote:
Long Live    Radio Paradise
For me: 9 - OUTSTANDING   but weak   lowering to but not Skip yet
 
For me: 9 - and a strong 9, though leaving it at 9, Long Live RP!!
Some powerful thoughts here about aging and the aged. So much of the generation that's being kept alive through drugs and the "miracles" of modern medicine and machines and such deteriorated an entire life in front of a TV set. Quite literally. Somehow music never found them, let alone rescued them. The physical world around them never "got in." So they age out alone. In front of their TV sets for a friend and companion. It's horrifying, really. When you see it happen to someone you know. There is no "fix" after a certain point. So you adjust their satellite dish if it's going wonky on 'em, mess with this or that, help them with the remote controls, yet again, and leave as soon as you possibly can do so... without being too impolite about it all. 
 hkweiberg wrote:
I was about the same age, listening to the album with headphones while babysitting. Couldn't get enough of this album. Still one of the best all time albums ever.

 

 triskele wrote:
Every day.  This song plays on RP EVERY DAY....
 
You're on drugs.  Or you're an extra in Groundhog Day.
I got Don't Shoot Me when it came out (I was 14?) and followed along from there. But over the years of collecting and listening I don't think I went *backwards* in his catalogue further than Tumbleweed Connection - I've neverheard this before. Loving it. Thank you RP for always surprising and delighting.
Long Live    Radio Paradise
For me: 9 - OUTSTANDING   but weak   lowering to but not Skip yet
I've grown fond of this entire album, and this is maybe my 2nd fav track from it, had to go 8 to 9 on this one.  Long Live RP!!
Grew up on old-school EJ.  Thanks for playing.  
I spent years thinking that this was Led Zep... Very Plant-y vocals and some Led Zep/Stairway touches to the rest of it. 
Was very surprised to eventually discover it was Elton John. Good work, sir! 
Every day.  This song plays on RP EVERY DAY....
Hopefully, at "60 years of age" we can walk ourselves down to church, or the pub, as the case may be.
 dboseman wrote:
EJ helped me get through my troubled adolescence and this music will always be special to me.  Ironically I am now "60 years on" and still remember lying in my bed listening to this on my Koss headphones when I was 14.
 

timeless and captivating
Can never get enough of this song
he's got 12 left then...
such a beautiful song!
EJ helped me get through my troubled adolescence and this music will always be special to me.  Ironically I am now "60 years on" and still remember lying in my bed listening to this on my Koss headphones when I was 14.
Not many songs stand the test of time. This one has only gotten *better* with time. Thanks, RP, for playing only quality.
OMG, I haven't heard this song forever!  Thank you Bill!  This song is one of those hidden treasures that don't get the same air time.  I think the entire Madman Across the Water is one album that should be played much more.  Please Bill, help me here.....
I didn't know this song, but it's beautiful.  Sometimes I wish we had a rating for how good/bad the song choice is.  Generally, I'm blown away by the brilliant choices.
 Mugro wrote:
A lot of early Elton John on RP lately. A lot of comments reflecting how great he was in the early 70s. It feels like we are mourning the loss of another rock legend. 

 
It's just that he and Bernie made such an incredible body of work, and his later work can't match it. 
 BCarn wrote:
Been following EJ since the beginning. A lot of so-so stuff after the "good years" ending with Blue Moves but this stands out as some of his best ever. And still very much worth seeing live.

 
Almost never mentioned, but it's one of my favorites. After Tumbleweed, Honky, Don't Shoot, but still a good album.
c.
A lot of early Elton John on RP lately. A lot of comments reflecting how great he was in the early 70s. It feels like we are mourning the loss of another rock legend. 

No I change to 9 - O U T S T A N D I N G 


Great album, especially for those introspective, quiet moments.
What a voice! Sadly, no longer there.
To me 8 - Most Excellent  TY RP
He was really a great touchstone back in 70s with Bernie and Cat Stevens.
Beautiful!
Brilliant Mix:

3:30 pm - Harry Manx - Death Have Mercy
3:34 pm - Elton John - Sixty Years On
3:38 pm - Porcupine Tree - Lips Of Ashes


 sb204 wrote:
So now I finally learned that Elton John once was able to make beautiful music. Why/when did he stop? The stuff I know and really dislike is not so much younger, if at all...

 
This album and Tumbleweed Connection for me represent his high watermark, as did so many other albums of that day. Whatever motivated the introspection-the Viet Nam war in part I think-of that era generated some brilliant poetry set to music. Why it devolves-who knows, all we can do is savor the time and moment. RP keeps all the great music of then and now in our minds with an amazing mix. 
 SECA_Alan wrote:
He really had something important to say back then, a new he knew just how to say it.

 
Bernie Taupin gets credit for the lyrics
So now I finally learned that Elton John once was able to make beautiful music. Why/when did he stop? The stuff I know and really dislike is not so much younger, if at all...
 below72 wrote:
11-17-70 - live Elton, Dee Murray on bass, and Nigel Olsen on drums.  The greatest three piece pop rock live performance of all time.  A&R Studios - on the band's first trip to the states promoting the first album - Your Song was just breaking. For all intense and purposes an unknown band - somewhat esoteric.  Whoever was there at A&R to see that performance saw the dawning of greatness.
Get it: Experience it, enjoy it - 11-17-70 a masterpiece.

 
Listening to this now.
Been following EJ since the beginning. A lot of so-so stuff after the "good years" ending with Blue Moves but this stands out as some of his best ever. And still very much worth seeing live.
 thewiseking wrote:
A wonderful album produced magnificently by Gus Dudgeon, who did Black Sabbaths early stuff and so many others. Gus, sadly died young. The mark of his production is all over this and most of Elton John's early, best, work.

 
High dudgeon indeed.
A wonderful album produced magnificently by Gus Dudgeon, who did Black Sabbaths early stuff and so many others. Gus, sadly died young. The mark of his production is all over this and most of Elton John's early, best, work.
amazing
The liveversion is awesome!
Love this early Elton sound, but Gus Dudgeon and Paul Buckmaster never get enough credit for their producing/arranging.
11-17-70 - live Elton, Dee Murray on bass, and Nigel Olsen on drums.  The greatest three piece pop rock live performance of all time.  A&R Studios - on the band's first trip to the states promoting the first album - Your Song was just breaking. For all intense and purposes an unknown band - somewhat esoteric.  Whoever was there at A&R to see that performance saw the dawning of greatness.
Get it: Experience it, enjoy it - 11-17-70 a masterpiece.
I could listen to music like this for the rest of the evening and it would be totally OK with me.
now this is better...
For the period...outstanding arrangement! The magical combination of he and Bernie Taupin.
 Bluecobra wrote:
I think the opera house live version may be slightly better than this version.

however this still gets a strong 8
 
Agree. I heard the Opera House version first, strangely enough.
When did art become paint by numbers? Certainly after this was originally recorded.
Sir Elton John is now 69 years old and still performing live.

I'm impressed.  His early music was definitely part of the musical output in the late 1960s/early 1970s that made the period one of the most creative in contemporary popular music. 
Test
Yesssss!
I think the opera house live version may be slightly better than this version.

however this still gets a strong 8

 
 hugogdt wrote:
Usually Elton John does not pull a string on me, but this one really does. 

 
My thoughts exactly. I still can't believe I've just rated him (not sure if this is the proper pronoun) an 8. 
 azcarol wrote:
Oh Elton - your beautiful, budding genious was so ALIVE in 1970! What runs through your mind when you revisit this piece, 46 years on? Thanks for giving us so much! 

 
Good comment. 
I only heard Elton in the 80's and well it was all a bit cheesy and horrible, I didn't know he was actually quite good once. Damn me and my open mind.
oh ooo-k, now I understand how that Donald Duck outfit he chose DOES fit the structural integrity of his music   : P
Excellence in all ways!
He really had something important to say back then, a new he knew just how to say it.
 MiloD wrote:
this is still a masterful album

 so true.  All of it.  Masterful, moving, lovely.


Oh Elton - your beautiful, budding genious was so ALIVE in 1970! What runs through your mind when you revisit this piece, 46 years on? Thanks for giving us so much! 
I genuinely used to think that this was some sort of lost Led Zep tune. I'm impressed that it was Elton all along…
 MiloD wrote:
this is still a masterful album

 

Indeed.
this is still a masterful album
This is such a beautiful song.
"Who'll walk me down to church when I'm sixty years of age..."

Ha - I can still remember when I thought that line made sense.

(Looks for, and fails to find, grizzled geezer emoticon.)
 On_The_Beach wrote:
I'm not usually a fan of strings with pop/rock music but it's working here.

 

My sentiments exactly.


 On_The_Beach wrote:
I'm not usually a fan of strings with pop/rock music but it's working here.

 
The Beatles and Elton pull it off on many occasions
dig deeper
Also Smashing Pumpkins, Psychedelic Furs (sleep comes down), Alison Goldfrapp, XTC etc...
I'm not usually a fan of strings with pop/rock music but it's working here.
Usually Elton John does not pull a string on me, but this one really does. Reminds me Mick Jagger in ballads as Angie. Maybe that's why ...
 AndyJ wrote:


We -are- that much healthier and in better shape.   Our parents did not have antibiotics growing up. Their water was not as pure. They did not have the anti-virals or vitamins in everything. They did not spend as much time running about in our underwear outdoors.  They bequeathed us a very healthy world. We didn't notice when the dying seemed to end in the 70s.  As a child I went to many funerals for family, friends, relatives, adults and children. 

Now, we annoying. We're running about; having sex, exercising, eating healthy, spending, spending, spending. Our parents didn't have the ability or wherewithal to do any of these things.   The lessons of the songs still speak to the loneliness of old age. Then and now the old are very lonely.  TV is not a companion and the internet only simulates human relationships.   We have made it so we can live longer, healthier and lonelier.   Did we win-?
 
Into this ever braver and newer world stride the internet billionaires who are prepared to colonize Mars, develop genetic editing technologies to eliminate diseases at the embryo level, prolong (their) lives well beyond what we know today. In the process, more of the work performed by actual humans will be done "better" by robots and computers, freeing the masses to do whatever they choose with the degraded planet left in the wake of the immortals. Or not...
This is an amazing song from Elton John when he had integrity. 
 xtalman wrote:

Perspective of younger folks.  If you think back to your 20's you probably had the same perception.  Now it is very different.  I was talking to a friend about how frail there 85 year old aunt was.  Suddenly dawned on me my dad would have been 85 this year, he passed at a very young age.  85 does not seem as old as it once did.

 

We -are- that much healthier and in better shape.   Our parents did not have antibiotics growing up. Their water was not as pure. They did not have the anti-virals or vitamins in everything. They did not spend as much time running about in our underwear outdoors.  They bequeathed us a very healthy world. We didn't notice when the dying seemed to end in the 70s.  As a child I went to many funerals for family, friends, relatives, adults and children. 

Now, we annoying. We're running about; having sex, exercising, eating healthy, spending, spending, spending. Our parents didn't have the ability or wherewithal to do any of these things.   The lessons of the songs still speak to the loneliness of old age. Then and now the old are very lonely.  TV is not a companion and the internet only simulates human relationships.   We have made it so we can live longer, healthier and lonelier.   Did we win-?

Very deep.. Thinking back on ones life, it makes you realize how fast it goes. Accomplishing what you wish to do, and become, goes fast.   
hey wow... sublime segue just now from Sinead to Sixty years on.....gave me goosebumps!
 agkagk wrote:
"Sixty Years On" and the Beatles' "When I'm Sixty-Four" are both from the same time period (1970 and 1967 respectively).
I certainly don't feel in need of any assistance as I approach my 60th.
Were 60 year old people really that frail 45 years ago? Has our health improved that much?
Or is this simply the perspective of young people? McCartney was 25, Bernie Taupin was 20 when they wrote these songs.   

 
Perspective of younger folks.  If you think back to your 20's you probably had the same perception.  Now it is very different.  I was talking to a friend about how frail there 85 year old aunt was.  Suddenly dawned on me my dad would have been 85 this year, he passed at a very young age.  85 does not seem as old as it once did.
I didn't realize how incredible Elton John was until I started noticing stuff like this here on RP.  Thought he was all just about the "Crocodile Rock" and the other overplayed FM radio stuff that is out there.  
innocent Elton prior to self inflicted brain damage....lovely!

thanks RP!


"Sixty Years On" and the Beatles' "When I'm Sixty-Four" are both from the same time period (1970 and 1967 respectively).
I certainly don't feel in need of any assistance as I approach my 60th.
Were 60 year old people really that frail 45 years ago? Has our health improved that much?
Or is this simply the perspective of young people? McCartney was 25, Bernie Taupin was 20 when they wrote these songs.   
CORRECTION: Sixty Years On is not on Elton John's debut album, but rather his second album.  His debut album is Empty Sky. ...just sayin'...
 ojibwe wrote:
There must be a million miles between here and "The Bitch is Back."

 
HA!  Yah...hard to believe the two sounds came out of the same guy, eh?  Personally he started losing me after his (to me) standout Madman Across the Water...not to take anything away from what he later did but...that one was...strong. 

Highlow
American Net'Zen
Great song but one of the worst lines ever: "You know the war you fought in wasn't too much fun"
Love it... the orchestral movements are wonderful{#Roflol}
 Imkirok wrote:
ELO?
 
Zappa?  "Tasteful" is an opinion.    {#Whistle}
This is  a beautiful song.  I actually haven't heard this version as I am only familiar with the live version played with the Sydney Philharmonic Orchestra.  I love this one too.
 ojibwe wrote:

Moody Blues? 

 
ELO?
 Daveinbawlmer wrote:
I don't think anyone has ever made popular music with classical orchestra so well ... just so beautifully and tastefully done.

{#Clap}

 
Moody Blues? 
There must be a million miles between here and "The Bitch is Back."
I miss this Elton.
So innocent then{#Pray}!
So Las Bloody Vegas now,{#Eek}{#Moon}!
Wonder how 'ol Elton feels about this song now that he's well into 60 years on, eh?
I don't think anyone has ever made popular music with classical orchestra so well ... just so beautifully and tastefully done.

{#Clap}
i remember in junior high thinking how OLD 60 seemed.

Now, it just seems ridiculous that anyone 60 would need HELP walking to church! ha

SIXTY in NOVEMBER!!!!!!!!  wee haw - what a long strange trip it has been
Still so good.....brings me back to my discovery of this guy..
"Who'll walk me down to church when I'm sixty years of age?"
Sir Elton is now 67!