21 at 33 is the fourteenth studio album by British singer/songwriter Elton John, released on 13 May 1980. It was recorded at Super Bear Studios, Nice, France, in August 1979, and Rumbo Recorders and Sunset Sound in Los Angeles, California between January to March 1980.

Two of John's "classic" bandmates, drummer Nigel Olsson and bass player Dee Murray, reunited with him for one song. His backup keyboardist James Newton-Howard returned and performed on almost every track as was the case on Rock of the Westies and Blue Moves. Other musicians included members of The Eagles and Toto as well as Peter Noone from Herman's Hermits.

The title comes from the fact that this was John's 21st album in total at the age of 33. According to the liner notes in the remastered edition of the album, the count includes all standard albums, two "Greatest Hits" compilations, two live albums, as well as the Friends soundtrack, the three-song, 12-inch EP The Thom Bell Sessions and the UK-only "rarities" collection Lady Samantha. The album sold over 900,000 copies in the United States, narrowly missing a Platinum certication.[4]

John has not played any of the material in concert since touring in 1980, with the exception of "Little Jeannie", "White Lady White Powder" and "Sartorial Eloquence". Even "Little Jeannie", which was a huge North American hit (#3 Pop and #1 Adult Contemporary in the United States, and #1 in Canada) is rarely performed, although it was included in the two One Night Only concerts in 2000.[5]


 [hide*1 Track listing

Track listing[edit]Edit

Side one[edit]Edit

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Chasing the Crown"   Elton JohnBernie Taupin 5:38
2. "Little Jeannie"   John, Gary Osborne 5:21
3. "Sartorial Eloquence"   John, Tom Robinson 4:42
4. "Two Rooms at the End of the World"   John, Taupin 5:39

Side two[edit]Edit

No. Title Writer(s) Length
5. "White Lady White Powder"   John, Taupin 4:35
6. "Dear God"   John, Osborne 3:45
7. "Never Gonna Fall in Love Again"   John, Robinson 4:07
8. "Take Me Back"   John, Osborne 3:52
9. "Give Me the Love"   John, Judie Tzuke 5:23
  • Five more songs, excluding the B-sides, were recorded during these sessions: "Heart in the Right Place", "Carla/Etude", "Fanfare", "Chloe" and "Elton's Song". They would appear on John's next release,The Fox.

In 2003, Mercury/Universal and The Rocket Record Company reissued the album on CD, remastered by Gary Moore. The lineup contained no bonus tracks.


Song Format
"Conquer the Sun" "Little Jeannie" 7" (US/UK)
"Cartier" "Sartorial Eloquence" 7" (US/UK)
"White Man Danger" "Sartorial Eloquence" 7" (US/UK)
"Tactics" "Dear God" 7" (UK)
"Steal Away Child" "Dear God" 7" (double) (UK)
"Love So Cold" "Dear God" 7" (double) (UK)



Region Certification Sales/shipments
Canada (Music Canada)[6] Gold 50,000^
France (SNEP)[7] Gold 175,500[8]
United States (RIAA)[9] Gold 500,000^

  • sales figures based on certification alone ^shipments figures based on certification alone xunspecified figures based on certification alone


Chart positions[edit]Edit

Chart (1980) Peak position
Australian Kent Music Report Albums Chart[10] 7
Canadian RPM Albums Chart[11] 10
Dutch Mega Albums Chart[12] 41
French SNEP Albums Chart[13] 3
Italian Albums Chart[14] 25
Japanese Oricon LP Chart[15] 56
New Zealand Albums Chart[16] 3
Norwegian VG-lista Albums Chart[17] 6
Swedish Albums Chart[18] 16
UK Albums Chart[19] 12
U.S. Billboard 200[20] 13
West German Media Control Albums Chart[21] 21

Year-end charts[edit]Edit

Chart (1980) Position
Australian Albums Chart[10] 25
Canadian Albums Chart[22] 42
French Albums Chart[23] 58
Italian Albums Chart[14] 73

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