Tiny Dancer: Rolling Stones #47 of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time (2024)

Tiny Dancer
Single: Elton John
Album: Madman Across the Water
B-side: Razor Face
Recorded: August 9, 1971
Released: 1972
Studio: Trident Studios, London
Genre: Soft rock, country rock, pop rock
Songwriters: Elton John, Bernie Taupin

"Tiny Dancer" was the opening track to John's 1971 album, Madman Across the Water. The song only reached number 41 on the US pop chart. Eventually, it became one of John's most popular. In 2010, Rolling Stone ranked the song number 397 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. It was ranked 47 on the 2021 list of Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

Maxine Feibelman
I knew [the song] was about me.
Maxine Feibelman

Bernie Taupin at his
wedding to Maxine Feibelman

In a 1973 interview in Rolling Stone, Bernie Taupin said that the song is about Maxine Feibelman, his wife at the time. In 2019, Feibelman said,  "I knew [the song] was about me. I had been into ballet as a little girl and sewed patches on Elton's jackets and jeans", referring to the song's description of a "seamstress for the band."

Live in Australia

In 1971, Elton John performed the song on the first series of The Old Grey Whistle TestAn orchestral live version of the song was performed by John with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra on December  14, 1986, at the Sydney Entertainment Centre during the final concert of his 1986 Tour De Force tour in Australia. His 1987 live album Live in Australia with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra included the performance.

In May 2017, an official music video for "Tiny Dancer" premiered at the Cannes Film Festival as a winner of Elton John: The Cut, a competition organized in partnership with AKQA, Pulse Films, and YouTube in honor of the fiftieth anniversary of his songwriting relationship with Taupin. 

The competition called upon independent filmmakers to submit treatments for music videos for one of three Elton John songs from the 1970s, each falling within a specific concept category. "Tiny Dancer" was designated for the live-action category, with the competition won by Max Weiland. 

The video was filmed in Los Angeles and features scenes of various residents driving around the city, including performers Marilyn Manson and Iris Karina.


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