Sir Elton John hits out at The Voice 'nonentities' and says he wouldn't want to be Justin Bieber

 

Sir Elton John has accused BBC1 talent show The Voice of producing "nonentities".

The veteran musician has often been a critic of TV talent shows in the past and has now blasted the poor track record of The Voice on both sides of the Atlantic.

And Sir Elton said the contest - commissioned for a third series by the BBC - was more about the coaches than the contestants.

His comments in an interview with Radio 4's Front Row programme - to be broadcast tonight - come in the wake of last year's winner Leanne Mitchell suffering a sales disaster with her debut album.

It peaked at number 134 in the album charts after selling fewer than 1,000 copies in its first week.

Even a return appearance in the final stages of this year's series failed to produce an uplift in sales.

And the 2013 winner Andrea Begley only made it to number 30 in the charts at the weekend for her track My Immortal in the wake of her win.

Sir Elton said: "The Voice is all about watching the judges, it is in America.

"Nobody on The Voice in America has had a hit record.

"Nobody on The Voice in England has had a hit record.- they're nonentities."

Asked by Front Row presenter John Wilson whether he had ever watched a music talent show, he admitted: "Never have done."

But he claimed many shows were fast-tracking people to fame who were not in a position to deal with it, and then moving on to the next wannabe.

Sir Elton said: "Television and video have done a lot of damage to music.

"They've propelled people into stardom that aren't ready for it, you know, and it can't sustain it.

"And they're only as good as the next song.

"I hate that, I hate people being cast aside.

"It breaks my heart to see people like Michelle McManus who won Pop Star, whatever it was, but it's not fair."

Speaking about the title track of his new album The Diving Board, he said: "It's about the pitfalls of being a young star, like a young Justin Bieber.

"It's hard when you're young to go through that incredible fame, when you haven't had a childhood and then you want to grow up.

"Luckily, fame came to me when I was 23, and then I lived my teenage years during my fame.

"But I wouldn't want to be Justin Bieber or any of those young artists.

"It's tough on them."

During the interview, he suggested that being a father of two young sons would affect his touring commitments of up to 120 dates a year as they got to school age.

"It will obviously change radically when Zachary goes to school and when Elijah goes to school, because then I will have to look at my touring schedules," he said.

"When they need schooling, course they can't come on tour.

"I can't be away from them that long.

"Things will have to change."

Sir Elton also committed himself to a gay marriage to his civil partner David Furnish at the earliest opportunity.

"We'll be there the first day it happens," he said.

"The fact that we've been given these chances by the British Government is something that is joyous and I'm very grateful for.

"And if this happens, yeah, I'll be there.

"I don't want a big grandiose thing.

"I'll just go to a register office, but I'd like to do it.

"I'd like to say, listen, we've been given this as people and years ago people had to have miserable lives because they were afraid of their sexuality.

"Embrace it, be thankful and set an example.

"And say, yes, this is how far Britain has come as a society and I am very proud of that."

:: The edition of Radio 4's Front Row is being broadcast today at 7.15pm.

PA

Arts and Entertainment
Chloe-Jasmine Whicello impressed the judges and the audience at Wembley Arena with a sultry performance
TVReview: Who'd have known Simon was such a Roger Rabbit fan?
News
Rumer was diagnosed with bipolarity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder: 'I was convinced it was a misdiagnosis'
peopleHer debut album caused her post-traumatic stress - how will she cope as she releases her third record?
Arts and Entertainment
Nick Frost will star in the Doctor Who 2014 Christmas special

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Friends is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year
TV
Arts and Entertainment
A spell in the sun: Emma Stone and Colin Firth star in ‘Magic in the Moonlight’
filmReview: Magic In The Moonlight
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Maisie Williams plays 'bad ass' Arya Stark in Game of Thrones

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't

TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Meera Syal was a member of the team that created Goodness Gracious Me

TV
Arts and Entertainment
The former Doctor Who actor is to play a vicar is search of a wife

film
Arts and Entertainment

music
Arts and Entertainment
Pointless host Alexander Armstrong will voice Danger Mouse on CBBC

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell dismissed the controversy surrounding

music
Arts and Entertainment
Jack Huston is the new Ben-Hur

film
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne modelling

film
Arts and Entertainment
Emma Thompson and Bryn Terfel are bringing Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street to the London Coliseum

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke's video for 'Blurred Lines' has been criticised for condoning rape

Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'

music
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)

film
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black

Review: Cilla, ITV TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Tom Hardy stars with Cillian Murphy in Peaky Blinders II

TV
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

    Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

    Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
    Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

    Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

    The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
    The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

    Scrambled eggs and LSD

    Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
    'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

    'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

    Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
    Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

    New leading ladies of dance fight back

    How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam