|Rod Stewart writes of affection for Elton
Saturday, October 13 2012
Rock star Rod Stewart may be famous for his bevy of ex-wives and girlfriends, but it is fellow pop star Elton John who comes in for the lion's share of Stewart's affection in excerpts from his new memoir.
In an excerpt published in Rolling Stone magazine on October 12, 2012, Stewart recalled bygone days the two British singers spent partying and on holiday, the Christmas presents they exchanged, and even their nicknames for each other - Phyllis and Sharon. "It was in the early 1970s that Elton and I drew especially close, the best of mates for a while," Stewart, now 67, writes in Rod: The Autobiography.
Elton lived with his then-boyfriend just down the road from Stewart in the countryside west of London, not far from one of the royal palaces at Windsor, Stewart recalled. "Our mutual friend Long John Baldry had christened me 'Phyllis,' he had christened Elton 'Sharon,' and that's what we were to each other: Phyllis and Sharon. Or just 'dear.'" Stewart, who had scored by then with both the No. 1 single, Maggie May and No. 1 album on both sides of the Atlantic, also wrote admiringly of Elton's stamina for hard partying: "I also had to be in awe of the fact that, whether it was drink or cocaine, he could see me right under the table every time."
Elton's extravagance also impressed. Stewart writes of one Christmas when he scoured shops and found a novelty portable refrigerator for Elton that opened up automatically as a cloud of vapour emanated and a bottle was hoisted up - "Brilliant." "Elton's present to me that year: a Rembrandt." "He later tartly referred to my present as 'an ice bucket,' " Stewart wrote. In 1985 on safari in Africa, the pair would dress up in bow ties and dark jackets for dinner around the fire.
The book also gave Stewart an opportunity to lay to rest a gay sex rumour that has dogged him since the 1970s. The singer, who has eight children from three marriages and other girlfriends, attributed its origins to his flamboyant assistant and publicist, the late Tony Toon, who he said fed the story to the press in revenge for Stewart's firing him.
Rod: The Autobiography will be published October 23, 2012 by Crown Archetype.
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