Pop legend Elton John was the recipient of the coveted Icon Award at the 2021 iHeartRadio Music Awards on Thursday night (May 27), and the trio of H.E.R., Brandi Carlile and Demi Lovato helped salute the iconic superstar.
The gripping medley tribute performance was full of spectacular throwback energy, and a musical salute that shouldn’t be missed.
Gracing the stage at Los Angeles Dolby Theater in front of a real-live audience, the performance began with H.E.R. seated at a bright red grand piano and backed by a big band — just like Sir Elton normally performs. Rolling through a rollicking version of “Bennie and the Jets,” she stood halfway through to rip through a guitar solo, and was followed by Carlile.
With John looking on, the rootsy star arrived in a ’70s inspired cream and burgundy suit, and crooned John’s “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me.” The medley then finished off with Lovato, who owned the stage with a fierce performance of “I’m Still Standing” — decked out in rhinestones at bedazzled sunglasses.
Also helping tribute the pop icon where Coldplay’s Chris Martin and country/rap firebrand Lil Nas X. In accepting his award, John stressed the continued importance of radio as a music discovery tool, and plugged his own podcast — Rocket Hour on Apple Music.
Country stars Dan + Shay also appeared on the 2021 iHeartRadio Awards, performing their single “Glad You Exist” and winning Best Duo/Group. Brandi Carlile was just handed two nominations for the upcoming 2021 Americana Honors & Awards, scoring nods for Artist of the Year and Duo/Group of the Year with her supergroup, The Highwomen.