Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Elton John inspired to succeed by 'uncaring dad'

Sir Elton John says being angry about his father inspired him to become a musician.

The openly homosexual pop star wishes his father, Stanley, had been "more loving", but believes his negative feelings towards him gave him the drive to pursue his song writing career.

Elton - born Reginald Dwight - told the Daily Mirror newspaper: "I blamed a lot of my lack of self-esteem on him, my problems with weight, my glasses - all these things which are so rooted in your childhood and never go away.

"I always wanted my dad to hug me and tell me he loved me. He didn't but he loved me in his own way. I now think that maybe my relationship with my dad, which I spent so many years being angry about, is the thing that actually made me successful. I never wanted to be this big performer, this Elton John, but something inside me gave me the courage to answer an ad in the New Musical Express and it started from there. I do think wanting to prove myself to my father had everything to do with that."

The flamboyant 63-year-old singer and his husband David Furnish, 48, became parents to son Zachary Jackson Levon through a surrogate mother on Christmas Day (25.12.10), and Elton insists his own upbringing will influence how he raises Zachary.

However, he worries about how his fame and vast wealth will affect his son.

He said: "Both David and I thought long and hard and this is a worry. But it's something you have to deal with. I would have hated to be born rich. I think it's more of a curse than anything else.

"Our child's life will be different. I don't believe every child needs a mother and a father and that is the only way. How many marriages split up, how many children are unwanted? We love our child, we want him to be surrounded by love and every problem we face will be together."