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Elton John says ‘diva reputation’ is down to historic cocaine-fuelled rages

Josh Milton January 13, 2020
Sir Elton John attends the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020.

Sir Elton John attends the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020. (Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

Elton John has always been unflinching in discussing his past use of drugs, and now he’s opened up about how his cocaine use in the 1970s led “a lot of people to say” he’d “always been a diva”.

John’s transparency in the topic of substance abuse has long seen him as the blueprint for recovery to many, and he himself has supported both Eminem and Robbie Williams during their own lapses.

Chatting to the Awards Chatter podcast, the “Rocketman” singer was candid about his cocaine use and how he first came across the class A drug.

‘Cocaine corrupted my mood, made people think I was a diva.’

“I saw someone doing cocaine,” Elton said, “and I didn’t know what it was.

“They said it makes you feel good. So I thought: ‘I will have a go.’

“Worst decision of my life.”

Overtime, cocaine corrupted parts of John’s identity as it altered his mood and behaviour, leading to loves ones branding him a “diva”.

Elton John performing in Perth
Elton John. (Faith Moran/Wireimage)

“I shouted at people,” he explained, “I wasn’t proud of that behaviour because it is not really who I am.

“It led a lot of people to say I’ve always been a diva. I am not.

“Now I don’t take drugs.”

It took 72 years for Elton John to realise his ‘amazing life’.

From having an entire Oscar-nominated biopic made about his life to a 300-day-long farewell tour, it’s safe to say Elton John has come far from this darker part of his life.

But is a life, overall, studded with staggering success, and a life that the 72-year-old has only just realised has been an “amazing” one.

“Because I 
live my life at such a high speed, sometimes you just go from one thing to the next,” John said on Elton John: Uncensored last year.

Sir Elton John and Taron Egerton attend a screening of "Rocketman" during the 72nd annual Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2019 in Cannes, France. (Mike Marsland/WireImage)
Sir Elton John and Taron Egerton attend a screening of “Rocketman” during the 72nd annual Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2019 in Cannes, France. (Mike Marsland/WireImage)

But writing his memoirs, Me, gave him a rare moment to reflect on his life. “Then I read the book in its entirety, I went: ‘God almighty!’

“I could have filled another 300 pages with stuff, but it’s been gratifying to know, at 72, that I can do the book and [Rocketman], and then move forward again.”

More: cocaine, drugs, Elton John, rocketman

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