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"It Ain't Gonna Be Easy"
Song by Elton John

from the album A Single Man

Released October 16, 1978
Recorded January-September 1978
Genre Rock, blues
Length 8:27
Label MCA (US/Canada)
Rocket Records
Writer Elton John, Gary Osborne
Producer Clive Franks, Elton John
A Single Man track listing
"Big Dipper"
(4)
"It Ain't Gonna Be Easy"
(5)
"Part-Time Love"
(6)

"It Ain't Gonna Be Easy" is a song by Elton John with lyrics by Gary Osborne. It is one of his longest songs recorded, and is the fifth track off his 1978 album, A Single Man. It also ends side one.

Musical structure

The song opens with a bluesy electric guitar intro accompanied by piano notes. It then goes into the first verse, which features piano, still heavily focused on blues. The rhythm section keeps a steady beats, making the song seem dark and empty, much in style with the moaning lyrics. For the second verse, a string section appears, baring resemblance to his older songs. After the main song, the song continues another four-five minutes, in which a mix between guitar and piano solos appear. One of the themes in the solo is much reminiscent of the piano performance in another one of John's older songs, "Sixty Years On". At the end of the song, John sings some of the highest falsettoes of his later period. Elton has rarely, if ever, performed the song live.

Lyrical meaning

The song describes a man whose lover has been cheating on him, which devastates him and makes him believe he cannot trust her. The narrator is torn between a decision to end the relationship (a recognition that he cannot go back to blindly trusting his lover and that it might be appropriate to fold a losing hand), but overall he offers to work things out if the lover is willing to work on patching things up. More emphasis is paid to the fact that patching things up will be difficult, though, and the song's overall mood is more despairing than forgiving or hopeful. There are only three verses in this song, though it is more than eight minutes long. The verses are repeated later parts, becoming increasingly wailing and melancholic.

Personnel

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