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Sir Elton John’s friendship with the royal family

The singer was very close to Princess Diana.

Elton John (Ian West/PA)
Elton John (Ian West/PA)

By Julia Hunt, PA Entertainment Correspondent

Sir Elton John has a long history with the royal family.

The family were said to be fans of the singer-songwriter back in the 70s and since then he is said to have been a guest at many events attended and thrown by royalty.

He once said that he jived with the Queen to rock ‘n’ roll hit Rock Around The Clock at a party at Windsor Castle.

In 1981, when Prince Andrew turned 21, the singer was apparently hired to perform at the celebration.

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Diana, Princess of Wales (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

It was there that he met Princess Diana and the pair bonded over a Charleston on the dancefloor.

They became close friends, sharing a passion for raising awareness of Aids.

In 1997 Sir Elton performed at Diana’s funeral after the lyrics to his hit Candle In The Wind were adapted to reflect her life.

The song tapped into the nation’s grief and went on to become the biggest-selling single in UK chart history.

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The Duke of Sussex hugs Sir Elton John (Gareth Fuller/PA)

The star later told The Telegraph: “Me playing at the funeral was one of the most surreal things I have ever done.

“What was going through my mind was ‘Don’t sing a wrong note. Be stoic. Don’t break down and just do it to the best you can possibly do it without showing any emotion whatsoever’.”

Sir Elton also became close to princes William and Harry.

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Prince William and his new bride Kate leave Westminster Abbey as David Furnish (left) and Sir Elton John look on (Jon Bond/PA)

Recalling meeting a young Prince Harry, he told Time magazine: “I first met an extremely shy and sweet Prince Harry at a private lunch at Kensington Palace, given by his mother Princess Diana for Gianni Versace and me many years ago.

“What a joy it has been to see that young boy grow to inherit his mother’s warmth, sense of humour and courage to stand up and champion the causes he truly believes in.”

In recent years Sir Elton has worked with Harry on Aids causes, continuing Diana’s legacy, and he was a guest when Prince William married Kate.

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex speak with Elton John at the European Premiere of Disney’s The Lion King (Niklas Halle’n/PA)

Last year he performed at the lunchtime reception when Harry tied the knot with Meghan, and this year they met up at the premiere of The Lion King in London.

Photographs from the screening show the Duke and Duchess of Sussex chatting to Sir Elton and his husband David Furnish.

Speaking on Lorraine last year, Sir Elton said of the princes: “Both those boys seem to be ecstatically happy, and that’s all you want people to be no matter who they are, when people get married you want them to last, you want them to be happy.”

PA

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