This past April, Elton was so confident that his new album, The Diving Board, was complete, he released a 10-song track listing but when the disc got pushed back to early 2013 for promotional reasons, the rocker started to have second thoughts.
“This is the first time that Elton’s had time to live with something before it’s come out,” producer T Bone Burnett tells Rolling Stone. “There were like seven or eight songs that were so completely of a piece that they have an identity. I think he thought, ‘You know, maybe I should write some more things in that mode so that the album has a tighter identity.’ Some tunes were maybe too happy for the overall identity of the album.”
The album was recorded in January and February at a Los Angeles studio. In a return to a format he used on the road in the early 1970s, Elton recorded the LP accompanied only by a bassist and a drummer.
“The first time I heard Elton it was with a trio at the Troubadour in 1970,” Burnett says. “And he absolutely killed it. I told Elton I had this profound drummer named Jay Bellerose and you won’t need anything else. He plays melody and tone and groove. Then the idea came we should just do it as a trio. Elton called bassist Raphael Saadiq. We cut the whole thing with that really tight kill team.”
In an earlier interview with Rolling Stone, Elton called it “the most exciting solo record I’ve done in a long, long time.”
–>T-Bone, the Mighty Hannibal and Elton in New York.