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Greatest Hits (Elton John album)


Greatest Hits (Elton John album)

Elton John Greatest Hits
Greatest hits album by Elton John
Released 8 November 1974
Recorded January 1970 – January 1974
Genre Rock, pop, glam rock
Length 47:40
Label MCA, Polydor, DJM
Producer Gus Dudgeon
Elton John chronology
Elton John's Greatest Hits
Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic [1]
Robert Christgau (B+)[2]

Elton John Greatest Hits, a 1974 compilation album, is the eleventh official album release for Elton John, and the first compilation. Released on MCA Records in November 1974, it spans the years 1970 to 1974, compiling ten of John's singles, with one track variation for releases in North America and for Europe and Australia. It topped the album chart in both the United States and the United Kingdom, staying at number one for ten consecutive weeks in the former nation and eleven weeks in the latter. It is his best-selling album to date, being his first to have received an RIAA Diamond certification for US sales of more than 16 million copies.


  • Contents 1
  • Track listing 2
  • Charts 3
    • Peak positions 3.1
    • Year-end charts 3.2
    • Certifications 3.3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6


The single "Bennie and the Jets," which had topped the charts in both nations but had not been a single in the United Kingdom, appeared on the American and Canadian edition of the album. It was replaced by "Candle in the Wind" for the UK and Australian edition, having been a hit in both of those countries but never released as a single in the US and Canada. The 1992 reissue contains eleven tracks, with both songs included.

"Border Song," an album track on Elton John outside of the US and Canada, went to No. 92 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and to No. 34 on the Canadian RPM national singles chart as a single in 1970.[3] All other songs made the Top 40 in the UK and the US, most also making the top ten, with "Bennie and the Jets" and "Crocodile Rock" topping the chart in the States. John would wait until 1976 to top the singles chart in the UK, via his duet with Kiki Dee, "Don't Go Breaking My Heart."

With only ten tracks total, the compilers left off several other hit singles from the time period. "Tiny Dancer" and "Levon" from the Madman Across the Water album made it to No. 41 and No. 24 respectively as singles in the US, and "The Bitch Is Back," his most recent single, was a No. 4 in the US and topped the chart in Canada. Although all of these charted higher than "Border Song," it may have been included because it was the first Elton John single to chart in any market. Of the ten selections for the North American album, two ("Crocodile Rock" and "Bennie and the Jets") had been US No. 1 hits; in Canada, five (these two plus "Daniel", "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me") had been chart-toppers.[4][5]

In 2003, Elton John's Greatest Hits was ranked at number 136 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. It was the first of his many compilation albums; later ones include Elton John's Greatest Hits Volume II, Elton John's Greatest Hits Volume III (later replaced by Elton John's Greatest Hits 1976–1986), The Very Best Of Elton John / To Be Continued..., Elton John's Greatest Hits 1970–2002 and Rocket Man: The Definitive Hits to name but a few.

Track listing

All music composed by Elton John, all lyrics written by Bernie Taupin.

Original North American version
Side one
No. Title Album Length
1. "Your Song"   Elton John 4:00
2. "Daniel"   Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player 3:53
3. "Honky Cat"   Honky Château 5:12
4. "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road"   Goodbye Yellow Brick Road 3:14
5. "Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting"   Goodbye Yellow Brick Road 4:55
Side two
No. Title Album Length
6. "Rocket Man (I Think It's Going to Be a Long, Long Time)"   Honky Château 4:40
7. "Bennie and the Jets"   Goodbye Yellow Brick Road 5:10
8. "Don't Let The Sun Go Down on Me"   Caribou 5:33
9. "Border Song"   Elton John 3:19
10. "Crocodile Rock"   Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player 3:56
Original international version

On the international releases, "Bennie and the Jets" was replaced by "Candle in the Wind" (3:41, taken from the album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road).

1992 Polydor Reissue

The compact disc version of Greatest Hits, issued in the 1990s, features both "Bennie and the Jets" (track 7) and "Candle in the Wind" (track 8).

1996 Japanese edition

The expanded edition released by Nippon PolyGram/Mercury Music Entertainment (subtitled Your Song) has a different running order, excluding "Bennie and the Jets" instead of five additional tracks.[6] In 2000, Universal Music Japan reissued the album under the alternative title Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. The track listing is as follows:


Peak positions

See also


  1. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Greatest Hits – Elton John". AllMusic. 
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert. "CG: elton john". 
  3. ^ Library and Archives Canada.
  4. ^ List of RPM number-one singles of 1973
  5. ^ List of RPM number-one singles of 1974
  6. ^  (PHCR-1443)]Your Song: Elton John's Greatest Hitsエルトン・ジョン / ユア・ソング~エルトン・ジョン・グレイテスト・ヒッツ [Product description: Elton John – . (in Japanese). CD Journal. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  7. ^ a b  
  8. ^ "Top Albums/CDs - Volume 22, No. 20" (PHP).  
  9. ^ "Greatest Hits" Elton John – . Hung Medien, (in Dutch).  
  10. ^ source: Pennanen, Timo: Sisältää hitin - levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972. Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava, 2006. ISBN 9789511210535. page: 280
  11. ^ "InfoDisc : Tous les Albums classés par Artiste > Choisir Un Artiste Dans la Liste" (in French). Retrieved 1 May 2013. Note: user must select 'Elton JOHN' from drop-down.
  12. ^ Oricon Album Chart Book: Complete Edition 1970–2005. Roppongi, Tokyo: Oricon Entertainment. 2006.  
  13. ^ "Greatest Hits" Elton John – (ASP). Hung Medien.  
  14. ^ "Greatest Hits" Elton John – (ASP). Hung Medien. VG-lista. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  15. ^ "Number 1 Albums – 1970s".  
  16. ^ : Charts & Awards : Billboard Albums"Greatest Hits"Allmusic: . Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  17. ^ "Greatest Hits"Album Search: Elton John – (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  18. ^ (1996 reissue) by Elton John]Your Song: Greatest Hits"グッバイ・イエロー・ブリック・ロード~エルトン・ジョン・グレイテスト・ヒッツ/エルトン・ジョン-リリース-ORICON STYLE-ミュージック" [Highest position and charting weeks of . (in Japanese). Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  19. ^ "Elton John - Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved 17 March 2014. 
  20. ^ "RPM Top 100 Albums of 1975".  
  21. ^ "The Official UK Charts Company : ALBUM CHART HISTORY". Archived from the original on 12 July 2010. Retrieved 16 December 2007. 
  22. ^ "Billboard.BIZ Top Pop Albums of 1975". Archived from the original on 31 December 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2014. 
  23. ^ "Billboard.BIZ: Top Pop Albums of 1976". Archived from the original on 15 January 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2014. 
  24. ^ "Canadian album certifications – Elton John – Greatest Hits".  
  25. ^ "Les Albums Or".  
  26. ^ "RIAJ > The Record > September 1996 > Certified Awards (July 1996)" (PDF).  
  27. ^ "RIAJ > The Record > February 2001 > Certified Awards (December 2000)" (PDF).  
  28. ^ "British album certifications – Elton John – Greatest Hits".   Enter Greatest Hits in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select album in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
  29. ^ "RIAA - Diamond Awards" (PHP). Retrieved 15 April 2014. 

External links

  • 500 greatest albums listingRolling Stone
Preceded by
Rollin' by Bay City Rollers
UK number-one album
23 November 1974 – 1 February 1975
Succeeded by
His Greatest Hits by Engelbert Humperdinck
Preceded by
It's Only Rock 'n' Roll by The Rolling Stones
Billboard Top LPs & Tape number-one album
30 November 1974 – 7 February 1975
Succeeded by
Fire by Ohio Players
Preceded by
Photographs & Memories by Jim Croce
Photographs & Memories by Jim Croce
Canadian RPM 100 number-one album
14–21 December 1974
11 January – 22 March 1975
Succeeded by
Photographs & Memories by Jim Croce
Blood on the Tracks by Bob Dylan
Preceded by
Serenade by Neil Diamond
Australian Kent Music Report number-one album
20 January – 23 February 1975
Succeeded by
Living in the Seventies by Skyhooks
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