William Shatner’s ‘Rocket Man’ is as Spacey as Ever

William Shatner’s infamous efficiency of “Rocket Man” is the reward that retains on giving. Shatner, the “Star Trek: The Original Series” legend who performed Captain James T. Kirk, was an in-person visitor on the latest episode of the CNN+ program “Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace?” when the veteran newsman stunned Shatner by displaying a clip of the “Rocket Man” efficiency.

Shatner, for his dramatic interpretation of “Rocket Man” on the January 20, 1978, Saturn Awards, which have been additionally identified then because the Science Fiction Film Awards, sported a tuxedo, took drags from a cigarette, and talk-sang his approach by way of the Elton John basic. Moments earlier than Wallace performed the clip, Shatner jokingly stated that he’d “torture” Wallace for doing so.

“I need to discover these spoken phrase albums, and I get what precisely what you are saying; it is not fairly singing,” Wallace stated. “It’s not fairly speaking, but it surely’s… you are going to kill me for this. 19…”

“I might by no means kill you,” Shatner teased. “I’d torture you.”

“…1978,” Wallace stated. “I’m going to play… Here’s one other spoken phrase album. Take a glance….”

Shatner watched the 25-second “Rocket Man” snippet and afterward quipped to Wallace, “Now your viewers goes to observe Chris die, as I kill you.” Both males laughed, and Shatner added, “It was an awards show… that wasn’t being broadcast. They stated, ‘Would you entertain us, and do “Rocket Man,”‘ so I stated, ‘Well, I’ll do it like Frank Sinatra…'” and gestured as if he have been smoking a cigarette and crooning like Sinatra.

Shatner Jokes about His ‘Rocket Man’ Performance

Wallace joked that the efficiency was “a little bit excessive,” prompting Shatner to notice, “All proper, so I used to be simply kidding round. I did not know they have been recording it. They launched that factor…” Wallace questioned the way it was even potential that Shatner did not know the efficiency was being recorded for posterity. Shatner, in any case, was sporting a tuxedo… at an awards show, and all the things, together with the digital camera strikes, was clearly choreographed.

“It wasn’t on TV,” Shatner stated. “It was an awards show. It was for an viewers (there on the show). I’m doing this factor. We’re all laughing. We’re all having enjoyable, and any individual is recording it, and launched the recording, launched the tape.”

“Well then, do not kill me,” Wallace stated. “Kill them.”

Shatner smiled once more and replied, “They’re deceased! You by no means heard from them once more. No, it was… It’s not my proudest second, however then I re-recorded it on one other album the best way I assumed it ought to go.”

Behold the Full ‘Rocket Man’ Video

The “Rocket Man” footage is basic. It’s Shatner at his most Shatner-esque. The ashes on his cigarette appear to defy gravity and positively want to seek out an agent to characterize them. Shatner’s frilly tuxedo shirt is a sight to behold. He’s totally dedicated to singing the music and digs deep for the drama in each lyric.

It’s the complete context of the video, nonetheless, that makes it virtually surreal. At the awards show, the late actress Karen Black introduces the music’s lyricist, Bernie Taupin, who says, “In 1972, when Elton John and I wrote ‘Rocket Man,’ it turned highly regarded among the many listeners. Due to the curiosity within the which means of the music, now, in 1978, on the Science Fiction Film Awards, I’m actually proud as soon as once more to current my ‘Rocket Man’ as interpreted by our host, William Shatner. Thank you.” So, Black, whose profession, in accordance with the Internet Movie Database, included an Oscar-nominated efficiency in “Five Easy Pieces” and such enjoyable B-movies as “Trilogy of Terror,” “Burnt Offerings” and “Killer Fish,” introduces Oscar and Grammy-winning Taupin, who introduces Shatner.

Though his “Rocket Man” interpretation nonetheless elicits some chuckles greater than 4 many years later, Shatner has by no means stopped making music. He’s recorded a number of albums, in accordance with AllMusic.com, together with “The Transformed Man,” the 1968 basic that options his inimitable cowl of the Beatles’ “Lucy within the Sky with Diamonds,” in addition to “Has Been,” “Exodus: An Oratorio,” “Seeking Major Tom” (which options the re-do of “Rocket Man” that he talked about to Wallace), “Ponder the Mystery,” “Shatner Claus: The Christmas Album,” “The Blues,” and “Bill,” and has collaborated with such world-class musicians Ben Folds, Billy Sherwood, Iggy Pop, Brad Paisley, Judy Collins, Sonny Landreth, Canned Heat, and others on songs from these albums.

Shatner is about to reunite with Ben Folds, who’s at the moment the inventive advisor for the National Symphony Orchestra, for a live performance on April 29, 2022, on the Kennedy Center. According to the NSO web site, DECLASSIFIED: Ben Folds Presents with William Shatner is “a particular live performance introduced as a part of Ben’s informal, late-night DECLASSIFIED collection. This distinctive ‘half live performance, half social gathering’ collection defies the normal symphony expertise with thrilling visitor artists, pre-show actions, and extra.”

New Shatner Concert Declassified


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