News 88.9 KNPR
Classical 89.7 KCNV
NV89 Discover Music

an member station

All Songs Considered

25 Years Ago Today, George Michael Helped Gift Elton John A No. 1 Record (Again)


George Michael and Elton John perform at Wembley Stadium in 1991.
Courtesy of the artist
George Michael and Elton John perform at Wembley Stadium in 1991.

The syrupy and grand "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me," originally written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin (the man behind many of John's lyrics) and released in 1974, wouldn't be a bona fide success until 17 years later, thanks to George Michael.

Michael and John first performed the song during 1985's Live Aid concert, converting the piano ballad into a stadium rocker, which then became a staple of Michael's solo live set.

Six years later, at London's Wembley Arena in 1991, Michael surprised the packed venue, bringing John on stage for a live reunion.

The recording of this enormous rendition would, 25 years ago today, put it at the top of the charts, proceeds from which were directed to AIDS charities.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit

Support comes from

Our journalism speaks for itself, and we answer only to you. That’s thanks to the 11,000 members of Nevada Public Radio. Each of them made a small commitment and became members of Nevada Public Radio. They didn’t have to — but because they did, you are here now. So we extend a hand and say, “Come join us!”