"Daniel" is a song and ballad by Elton John. It appeared on the 1973 album Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player. It was written by John and his lyricist Bernie Taupin. In the United Kingdom, the song reached no. 4 in the official chart. In the US the song reached No. 2 on the pop charts (only held from number one by "My Love" by Paul McCartney & Wings) and No. 1 on the adult contemporary charts for two weeks in the spring of 1973. In the United States, it was certified Gold in September 1995 and Platinum in May 2018 by the RIAA. In Canada, it became his second No. 1 single, following "Crocodile Rock" earlier in the year, holding the position for two weeks in the RPM 100 national singles chart. Writers John and Taupin received the 1973 Ivor Novello award for Best Song Musically and Lyrically.
Donatella Versace named her son after this song.
Bernie Taupin wrote "Daniel" after reading an article in either Time or Newsweek about a Vietnam War veteran who had been wounded, and wanted to get away from the attention he was receiving when he went back home. The last verse in the original draft was cut from the final version, which has led to some speculation on the contents.
"'Daniel' had been the most misinterpreted song that we'd ever written," explained Taupin, in the Two Rooms tribute project. "The story was about a guy that went back to a small town in Texas, returning from the Vietnam War. They'd lauded him when he came home and treated him like a hero. But, he just wanted to go home, go back to the farm, and try to get back to the life that he'd led before. I wanted to write something that was sympathetic to the people that came home."
|US Billboard Hot 100
|US Cash Box Top 100
- Grammy Awards
"Daniel" was covered on the 1991 album Two Rooms: Celebrating the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin by Wilson Phillips. It reached number seven on the US Adult Contemporary chart as an album cut.
Sam Smith covered the song for the 2018 tribute album Revamp: Reimagining the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin.
The band Fuel (band) covered "Daniel" on the bonus version of their year 2000 Something Like Human' album.
Use as film music
"Daniel" can be heard in the film Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore by Martin Scorsese.
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