Sir Elton John says that he won’t “rush” young artists who he has signed to his Rocket Music Entertainment Group company into the studio before they are ready.

The gay star, who has frequently criticised the speed at which talent shows such as the X Factor push up and coming singers into stardom, says that young artists need time to develop their skills first.

Rocket Music already has signed-up Leon Russell, Lily Allen, James Blunt and Sir Elton himself.

Sir Elton tells Music Week, “The worst thing to do is to rush people to have a record out. They’ll make a record when they’re ready and it comes out when it is ready.”

Last year, Sir Elton said: “I’m not a fan of talent shows. I probably wouldn’t have lasted if I’d gone on one. I like Simon Cowell, but what he does is TV entertainment. I was asked to judge American Idol. I couldn’t do it because I won’t slag anyone off. Also, I don’t want to be on television. It’s become boring, arse-paralysingly brain crippling.”

“There have been some good acts, but the only way to sustain a career is to pay your dues in small, s**t clubs. TV vaults you to superstardom and then you have to back it up, which is hard.”

He added: “It’s important they write their own songs, so they’re not at the mercy of anyone. Songwriters today are pretty awful, which is why everything sounds the same. Contemporary pop isn’t very inspiring.

“Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke are at the mercy of the next song they can get. Susan Boyle was an endearing phenomenon, but I fear she might not understand the rigours of showbusiness.”