Elton John – Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player Album

Side one

  1. Daniel” – 3:54
  2. Teacher I Need You” – 4:10
  3. Elderberry Wine” – 3:34
  4. Blues For My Baby and Me” – 5:42
  5. Midnight Creeper” – 3:55

Side two

  1. Have Mercy on the Criminal” – 5:57
  2. I’m Gonna Be a Teenage Idol” – 3:55
  3. Texan Love Song” – 3:33
  4. Crocodile Rock” – 3:58
  5. High Flying Bird” – 4:12

Do not Shoot Me is the sixth studio album by British singer and composer Elton John.

At the beginning of the 1970s, John met Groucho Marx at a party in Hollywood. He insisted that he could not possibly call Elton John, the name had to be John Elton. He was kidding John over and over again one night until John raised his arms in mock capitulation, saying, “Do not shoot me! I’m just the piano player “(ie:” Let me live, I only play the piano “). The cover photo of the album shows, among other things, the movie poster for the Marx Brothers movie “Go West”. Perhaps a hidden clue to the emergence of the title.

For the recordings, John and his team again chose the studio Château d’Hérouville near Paris. At that time it was known as “Strawberry Studios”, at least that’s what it was called on the record sleeve.

John composed twelve songs in just two days, ten of which found their way onto the new album. The most commercially successful song of the album was “Crocodile Rock”. In Germany, the title was first on 11 December 1972 in the single charts, stayed there for 21 weeks and rose to third place, in Austria to 6th place and in Switzerland, he was even a number 1 hit , For the single release “Daniel” John played for the B-side again “Skyline Pigeon”, this time with piano as a leading instrument.

The popularity of the party song “Crocodile Rock” also brought the longplayer even in the album charts in Germany to 16th place and thus achieved a better placement than John’s record album “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” a year later.

In the US, it was John’s second album, reaching # 1 on the album charts. At the same time it contained with the title “Crocodile Rock” his first No. 1 single in the US and Canada. The album’s second hit, “Daniel,” was almost as successful in North America and Europe.

The album is just one of two albums featuring “the” Elton John band: John on the piano, Davey Johnstone on guitar, Dee Murray on bass, and Nigel Olsson on drums (and without percussionist Ray Cooper) , The other album is Breaking Hearts from the year 1984.

Of course, John was judged by his predecessor album Honky Château, which received very good reviews and made it known to a wide audience. In His Song: The Musical Journey of Elton John by author Elizabeth Rosenthal, John said “Crocodile Rock” would be an open tribute to the songs of the fifties and with his voice he intoned the singer Bobby Vee. “High Flying Bird” should sound like the songs of Van Morrison and “Midnight Creeper” is a tribute to the Rolling Stones.

Years later, John frankly acknowledged that the tunes were from different genres of his youth together. And this was probably the reason that his own style for his music was not awarded yet, his music was called “derivative”.

But that was precisely why Do not shoot me had an impressive musical diversity to offer and was considered an entertaining step in the right direction for John’s career.