“You can’t move atmosphere and you can’t move history.” That is what Elton John said about Madison Square Garden on Tuesday, February 22, when referring to the Garden possibly being moved a few years ago. He has said many times that the Garden is his “most favorite stage on Earth”. John has performed there over 70 times spanning his 60 year career, but it is still sad to think that no future generations will get to experience an Elton concert at MSG ever again.
That being said, his farewell shows at The Garden were nothing less than extraordinary. The setlist was filled with his greatest hits from the 70’s and 80’s with the exception of “Cold Heart”, his recent duet with Dua Lipa from his “Lockdown Sessions” album which came out in October of last year.
He kicked off the show with “Bennie and the Jets” and “Philadelphia Freedom.” Other songs on the setlist included “Rocket Man”, “Levon” and “The Bitch is Back”. He played for 2 and a half hours and only took two small breaks for costume changes. While addressing the crowd for the final time, Elton said “After this tour is finished, I’m going to spend time with my family, my children, and enjoy the rest of my life. Thank you for understanding. I love you so much.” It was a bittersweet moment. The crowd gave him a standing ovation as he transitioned into “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.”
On the way to NYC, Elton’s private jet was forced to make an emergency landing after it suffered hydraulic failure at 10,000 feet. Luckily he was able to get on another plane and make it to NYC and perform the final two Garden shows. These shows were already rescheduled from last year because of the rise in Covid cases. This tour does not end until 2023 with the last show being scheduled in Sweden. You can see all the remaining tour dates here
Elton John – Madison Square Garden, NYC – Tuesday, February 22, 2022
Setlist: Bennie and the Jets, Philadelphia Freedom, I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues, Border Song, TIny Dancer, Have Mercy on the Criminal, Rocket Man, Take Me to the Pilot, Someone Saved My Life Tonight, Levon, Candle in the Wind, Funeral for a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding, Burn Down the Mission, Sad Songs (Say So Much), Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me, The Bitch is Back, I’m Still Standing, Crocodile Rock, Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting, Cold Heart, Your Song, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road