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Don't Go Breaking My Heart: Wikis

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"Don't Go Breaking My Heart"
Single by Elton John with Kiki Dee
B-side "Snow Queen"
Released 21 June 1976
Genre Pop
Length 4:28
Label Rocket Records
MCA Records (US/Canada)
Writer(s) Ann Orson
Carte Blanche
Producer Gus Dudgeon
Elton John chronology
"Grow Some Funk of Your Own"/"I Feel Like a Bullet (In the Gun of Robert Ford)"
(1976)
"Don't Go Breaking My Heart"
(1976)
"Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word"
(1976)
Kiki Dee chronology
"Once a Fool"
(1975)
"Don't Go Breaking My Heart"
(1976)
"First Thing in the Morning"
(1977)

"Don't Go Breaking My Heart" is a duet by Elton John and Kiki Dee. It was written by Elton John with Bernie Taupin under the pseudonym "Ann Orson" and "Carte Blanche" (a pun on the expression "an horse and cart, blanche"), and intended as an affectionate pastiche of the Tamla Motown style, notably the various duets recorded by Marvin Gaye and singers such as Tammi Terrell and Kim Weston. It is not to be confused with the Burt Bacharach/Hal David song of the same title recorded in 1966 by Dionne Warwick.

Like many of Elton John's singles from the 1970s, it was never included on any of his original albums (though it was recorded during the same sessions that produced Blue Moves). However, it was included on the original version of Elton John's Greatest Hits Volume II in 1977. It has since been shifted to the "Volume 3" compilation, Greatest Hits 1976–1986. In 2002, it also appeared on Elton John's 2-disc greatest hits album, Elton John's Greatest Hits 1970-2002. A demo version of the song was recorded by John as a solo artist. This version has not been released commercially.

"Don't Go Breaking My Heart" was also John's first No. 1 single in the UK, topping the chart for six weeks in mid 1976. He would not enjoy a solo British chart-topper until Sacrifice in 1990. It also became his sixth No. 1 single in the US, topping the Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks.

The b-side "Snow Queen" has yet to be released on CD. The song was supposedly inspired by Cher, with Elton's improvising past Sonny & Cher hits I Got You Babe, and The Beat Goes On as well as the solo Cher song Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) during the fadeout of the song.

In 1985, John and Dee performed the track to the crowd at Wembley Stadium during John's set at Live Aid (where Dee sang backup). In 1987, Elton appeared with Minnie Mouse on the NBC series Totally Minnie performing the track. He also performed it with the Spice Girls on his ITV tribute programme An Audience With Elton John.

Contents

Music video

The song’s promotional film has been cited among the cheapest music videos ever produced. The circumstances behind its conception were detailed on an episode of Pop-Up Video. The video’s director was found in the midst of filming a Rod Stewart television special. He was pulled aside, located an unused soundstage, hastily dressed it to give the appearance of a recording studio, setup three cameras and had the two singers pretend to record their vocals. Shot in a single take while being told to ‘improvise’, Elton John and Kiki Dee often missed their cues and John’s attempt to lead Dee in a very haphazard dance sequence caught his companion off guard. The music video with RuPaul features a black grand piano, something Elton has not used since 1987.

Cover versions

Sampling

Hip hop music artist Ol' Dirty Bastard and R&B singer Macy Gray recorded a loose cover version of the song which retained the melody but featured new rap lyrics and intentional off-key singing.

Appearances and references in other media

  • The original recording by John and Dee is featured in the movies Summer of Sam from 1999 and A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints from 2006.
  • In the finale of the 2005 Disney CGI feature film Chicken Little, the main cast sang "Don't Go Breaking My Heart".
  • A Hannah Montana episode is called "Don't Go Breaking My Tooth", a pun on the song's title.
  • In the Full House episode "We Got The Beat", two of Michelle's friends sing "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" in a contest and win the grand prize.
  • In an episode of The Amanda Show, in a Moody's Point sketch, Misti has a party and invites a lot of people, but no one attends except the school janitor. She and the janitor sing karaoke to "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" while other parts of the episode are being shown while they sing.
  • The song is featured in a season 5 episode of the hit tv comedy Scrubs, as part of one of JD's infamous 'Floating Head Doctor' fantasies. "Head" and JD's girlfriend Kim perform the duet at kareoke.
  • The song is featured in an episode of Family Guy, as Peter Griffin goes to a karaoke bar and performs the duet with Rich Little, who is pretending to be the ghost of Ronald Reagan through a ham radio.
Preceded by
"Kiss and Say Goodbye" by The Manhattans
Billboard Hot 100 number one single
7 August 1976
Succeeded by
"You Should Be Dancing" by Bee Gees
Preceded by
"The Roussos Phenomenon EP" by Demis Roussos
UK number one single
24 July 1976 for six weeks
Succeeded by
"Dancing Queen" by ABBA
Preceded by
"S-S-S-Single Bed" by Fox
Australian Kent Music Report number one single
30 August 1976
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