It may have had (some) similarities with the London Hyde Park Party in the Park gig of July 2000, but there was no damp squibb when Jonathan Kane took them by storm last weekend.
I have seen many great Elton John impersonators over the years. While the best look-a-like is probably our old friend Ray Johnson, there is no doubt that the best musical performer is rising star, Jonathan Kane.
Bradford-based Jonathan, who performs under the stage name Jon's Elton, not only has the manners and voice of Elton, he also plays damn good piano!
It was a wet afternoon on July 26, 2003, as I arrived at Priory Park in Reigate, Surrey, England, for Jonathan's gig. It is rare for him to do a public performance in southern England, as he tends to get booked up for private events like weddings south of Watford.
At the Reigate Summer Festival, Jonathan was bubbling and ready for action when we turned up to meet him backstage ahead of the show.
About 1,500 people attended the live open air concert but their spirit was not diminished by the rain in this party in the park.
As it happened, the annual Hyde Park party in the park event was going on simultaneously in London!
Happily for Jonathan, there was none of the farce which had seen real Elton three years earlier enter the stage, hit the electric piano and - nothing! A damp circuit had stopped transmission for a while!
This time, the brilliant stage, complete with the ever-present, bright-coloured security, was ready for our Elton impersonator.
Jonathan ran through songs which included Your Song, Don't Go Breaking My Heart, Crocodile Rock, Rocket Man and ended with Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting. The show, which backed onto a Queen tribute band and a T-Rex tribute band, lasted 30 minutes.
Tickets for the 2 and a half hour show, which with band changeovers lasted well over three hours in this regal park, were priced at £21, about one-fifth the price of tickets for the real Elton music machine!
Dressed in purple, in a Madison Square Garden-like costume which impressed the purple-conscious ejw.com crowd, Jonathan belted out the hits and could easily have stayed on for many more!
He oozed real personality and showmanship and engaged the crowd in a singalong. You will be seeing a lot more of him in 2003 and beyond!
And today we are pleased to announce our endorsement of his musical stage performance!
"Given a copy of Jonathan's demo tracks and were impressed that Jonathan has the ability to perform Elton's early and latest songs with the right voice for the era," said George Matlock, editor, eltonjohnworld.
"Jonathan brings a young thin voice to Your Song, but a raunchier rendition to Kiss The Bride. He is the most verstatile performer I had privilege to hear, and it only remained for us to see him live before being prepared to endorse his gig as Elton-esque," George added.
"We are pleased to say Jonathan made the grade, and we wish him well in his performing career"