You Gotta Love Someone

Album: To Be Continued... (1990)
Charted: 33 43
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Songfacts®:

  • You can take on the world, go forth and conquer, but first, you gotta love someone. It's a simple but eloquent lyric written by Bernie Taupin, and one that proved prescient when Elton John got his life in order a short time later. By 1990, Elton had spent years suffering from bulimia and cocaine addiction. When he finally decided to take action, it was prompted by his new love, Hugh Williams, who convinced him to go to therapy together. At those sessions, they were asked to list each other's faults. Williams cited Elton's bulimia, alcoholism, drug addiction and fits of rage. Elton flagged Williams for not putting away his CDs properly.

    This got through to Elton, and in the summer of 1990 he entered a hospital in Chicago where he was treated, emerging six weeks later sober and determined to make positive lifestyle changes. His relationship with Williams didn't last, but the sobriety stuck and Elton enjoyed a career revival, returning in 1992 with his hit album The One.
  • This was one of four new songs issued on the 1990 collection To Be Continued..., a four-disc set of hits and rarities. That same year, the song also appeared on the soundtrack to the Tom Cruise movie Days of Thunder, and on The Very Best Of Elton John compilation.
  • Elton used a collection of top studio musicians on this track, including Toto members Steven Lukather (guitar) and David Paich (keyboards). Randy Jackson, later a judge on American Idol, played bass, and Kenny Arnoff handled drums. Don Was produced the track, and the backing vocals included the Waters Family, who brought their gospel stylings.
  • This had just a modest showing on the pop charts, but was Elton's 10th #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart. On the Hot 100, it peaked at #43 the first week of 1991, making 22 consecutive years Elton had a song on that chart. This tied a record held by Elvis Presley; Elton extended it to 31 before finally going hit-free in 2001.
  • Andy Morahan directed a very VH1-friendly video for this song, which combines sepia-toned footage of a rural family with shots of Elton playing the song at the piano. Morahan did a lot of work with Elton's good friend George Michael, directing the videos for "Faith" and "Father Figure."

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