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Released: May 19, 1972

Rating: 3.972 (average of 11 ratings)

Genre: pop

Quotable: “one of the finest collections of mainstream singer/songwriter pop of the early ‘70s” – Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide

Album Tracks:

  1. Honky Cat
  2. Mellow
  3. I Think I’m Going to Kill Myself
  4. Susie (Dramas)
  5. Rocket Man (I Think It’s Going to Be a Long, Long Time)
  6. Salvation
  7. Slave
  8. Amy
  9. Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters
  10. Hercules

Sales (in millions):

sales in U.S. only 2.0
sales in U.K. only - estimated --
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated 5.5


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 1 5
peak on U.K. album chart 2

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Rocket Man (4/22/72) #6 US, #2 UK, #39 AC
  • Honky Cat (8/12/72) #8 US, 31 UK, #6 AC

Notes: A CD reissue added an alternate take of “Slave.”



Honky Chateau
Elton John
“Considerably lighter than Madman Across the Water, Honky Chateau is a rollicking collection of ballads, rockers, blues, country-rock, and soul songs. On paper, it reads like an eclectic mess, but it plays as the most focused and accomplished set of songs Elton John and Bernie Taupin ever wrote. The skittering boogie of Honky Cat and the light psychedelic pop of Rocket Man helped send Honky Chateau to the top of the charts.” STE

“What is truly impressive about the album is the depth of its material. From the surprisingly cynical and nasty I Think I’m Gonna Kill Myself to the moving ballad Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters, John is at the top of his form, crafting immaculate pop songs with memorable melodies and powerful hooks. While Taupin’s lyrics aren’t much more comprehensible than before, John delivers them with skill and passion, making them feel more substantial than they are. But what makes Honky Chateau a classic is the songcraft, and the way John ties disparate strands of roots music into distinctive and idiosyncratic pop – it’s one of the finest collections of mainstream singer/songwriter pop of the early ‘70s.” STE

Review Source(s):

Related DMDB Links:

Previous Album: Madman Across the Water (1971) Elton John’s DMDB page Next Album: Don’t Shoot Me, I’m Only the Piano Player (1973)

Last updated March 30, 2010.