Elton John

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    • At the age of 15, with the help of mother Sheila and stepfather "Derf," Reginald Dwight became a weekend pianist at the nearby Northwood Hills pub, playing on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. He played everything from Jim Reeves country songs ("He'll Have to Go") to Irish folk numbers ("When Irish Eyes Are Smiling"), decades-old ditties ("Beer Barrel Polka"), hits of the day ("King of the Road"), and songs he had written himself. He received a modest, steady income and substantial tips. "During that whole period, I don't think I ever missed a gig," he said later. A stint with a short-lived group called the Corvettes rounded out his time.

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