Elton John Praises Real Estate’s “Beautiful” Rendition of His Hit “Daniel” at Unique Album-Release Event

New Jersey-based indie-rockers Real Estate devised a unique way to celebrate the recent release of their latest album, Daniel, and in the process, they got the attention of Elton John.

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According to Brooklyn Vegan, the band played an intimate show on the eve of the album’s February 23 release at the small Brooklyn, New York, club Union Pool, and only people with the moniker Daniel in their name were invited to attend. Real Estate also opened and closed the gig with a performance of John’s 1973 soft-rock hit “Daniel,” which, incidentally, is not featured on the group’s new record.

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In the wake of the performance, John invited Real Estate frontman Martin Courtney to be interviewed on his Apple Music radio show the Rocket Hour.

“The new album is called Daniel,” John commented to Courtney. “[A]nd you launched the album by playing our song ‘Daniel’ to an audience who were completely comprised of people who were called Daniel, right?”

“That’s right,” Courtney replied. “We had to go full steam with the gimmick, for sure.”

[RELATED: Joni Mitchell, Metallica, & More Honor Elton John Recognized: Library of Congress Gershwin Prize]

John then asked Courtney how he went about gathering an audience completely made up of people with that name.

“Well, the trick is to play a venue that is, like, 150 [capacity],” Courtney noted. “So, you know, we didn’t need that many of them.”

John also told Courtney that he saw a video of Real Estate’s performance of “Daniel” and thanked him for doing his song, adding, “It was really beautiful.”

Courtney’s Children Are Elton John Fans

Courtney also told John that he has three daughters who are “huge fans” of Elton. He added, “They were so excited when they found out I was doing this [radio show].”

John Had Further Praise of Real Estate

Later in interview, John told Courtney that he thinks Daniel “is really, really a beautiful record.” In addition, John praised Real Estate’s new song “Flowers,” which he played on the show.

Real Estate Also Played “Daniel” at Another Album-Release Event

Real Estate also played “Daniel” at a February 23 album-release event at the Rough Trade NYC store in Manhattan. You can check out fan-shot video of the performance on YouTube.

About Elton John’s “Daniel”

“Daniel” was featured on John’s 1973 album Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player. It peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

John’s songwriting partner, Bernie Taupin, wrote the lyrics after reading a magazine article about a wounded Vietnam War vet who wanted to get away from the unwanted attention he was receiving after returning home from the conflict.

Real Estate’s 2024 Tour Plans

Real Estate currently is in the middle of a U.S. tour in support of Daniel. The current leg is mapped out through a May 26 concert in Atlanta. The band also has a European trek lined up that kicks off September 24 in Paris and runs through an October 6 show in Glasgow, U.K.

Tickets for the shows are available now via various outlets, including StubHub.

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