Prince Harry: Elton John declined to play “Candle In the Wind 1997” at 10th anniversary of Diana’s death

Penguin Random House

Elton John was a close friend of the late Princess Diana and is also close to her sons, Prince Harry and Prince William. But in his new memoir, Spare, Harry details a couple of disagreements the two have had over the years.

In the book, as reported by The Huffington Post UK, Harry recalls watching Elton perform a rewritten version of “Candle in the Wind” at his mother’s funeral in 1997, writing, “I do have one pure, indisputable memory of the song climaxing and my eyes starting to sting and tears nearly falling. Nearly.” 

But according to Harry, when he asked Elton to play the song in 2007 at the Concert for Diana, held on the 10th anniversary of his mother’s passing, Elton declined, fearing it would be too “morbid.” Instead, he played “Your Song,” which, Harry writes, he sang with “a twinkle and a smile, aglow with good memories.”

Another time the two had a difference of opinion, Harry writes, was in 2019, when Harry, his wife, Meghan, and their son, Archie, were visiting Elton at his home in France.

During the visit, Elton said he was going to serialize his autobiography, Me, in the British tabloid The Daily Mail, which Elton, Harry and Meghan had sued for defamatory stories. When Harry asked Elton why he’d chosen a paper that had made his life “miserable,” Elton explained that he “wanted people to read” the book.

Harry then notes that he decided not to push the matter further, writing, “I loved him. I’ll always love him. And I also didn’t want to spoil the holiday.”

Following that visit, Elton publicly defended Harry and Meghan after they were slammed by the British press for using a private jet to fly to France to visit him.

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