Rebecca Tyrrel: Neo-Luddite Elton admitted that he didn’t know the web address of his own charity

Share
Related Topics

Who knew that Elton John is a staunch enemy of modern technology? This news first emerged on The Larry King Show a few years back, when the Queen Mother of rock sheepishly admitted that he had no idea of the website address of his own charity, and only last year he revealed: "I don't have a phone, I don't have a computer, I don't have an iPad and I don't have an iPod".

On first thought, it seems incredible that a man whose monthly bill for fresh flowers could clear the Greek sovereign debt doesn't rattle through a dozen iPhones each week, tossing them in the bin as he goes because the glass screen has become smeary with make-up.

On reflection, though, you can see how Sir Elton could regard modern forms of communication as best left to others to carry out on his behalf, much as senior members of the royal family leave it to their flunkies to carry cash.

Of course he is by no means the only neo-Luddite out there in A-list land. Sir Paul McCartney has fondly reminisced about the days when telephones were kept below stairs with the servants – though that seems more in keeping with inter-war Downton Abbey than 1950s Liverpool – and claims not to have mastered the admittedly fearsome intellectual challenge of using a cash machine.

George Clooney once informed a press conference, "I'd rather have a rectal examination on live TV by a fellow with cold hands than have a Facebook page". And School of Rock star Jack Black will not "give in to the digital age" to the extent of still recording albums on to cassette tapes.

But perhaps now that Sir Elton is a dad, with his very own little 'digital native' to contend with, the cyber stubbornness will loosen. Indeed, there are already signs that the fierce internal battle between his own technophobia and indulgent parental love is being won by the latter – Sir Elton has now deigned to buy an iPad so he can keep tabs on his son via webcam when away on tour. A good sign, for how will he cope when young Zachary demands a diamond-encrusted iPhone 9 for his seventh birthday? Sorry will certainly seem to be the hardest word if Elton refuses to comply.

As for the mobile phone... it's tempting to ponder that Elton restricts his relationship with that to pocketing a few million a year from downloaded ringtones of his greatest hits.

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Photographer / Floorplanner / Domestic Energy Assessor

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Photographer/ Floor planner /...

Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Surrey - £40,000

£30000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Guildford/Craw...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Assistant

£13500 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Customer Service Assistant is...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £35,000

£16000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An ambitious and motivated Sale...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Letter from the Whitehall Editor: The spurious Tory endorsement that misfired

Oliver Wright
 

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband hasn’t ‘suddenly’ become a robust leader. He always was

Steve Richards
Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence