Paul McCartney sends a tribute message to Elton John and Bernie Taupin

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

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Elton John and Bernie Taupin were honoured with the 2024 Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. To commemorate this achievement, a tribute concert was held on March 20, 2024.

Paul McCartney, who received the same award in 2010, contributed a video message for the occasion. The message was recorded in his MPL Communications office in London.

Congratulations Bernie and Elton. Wow, what a great honor. Since the sixties when we first knew each other, I’ve always admired the collaboration of the two of you, and I’ve always been slightly jealous because me and John worked together, both playing the instruments, both did words and music. But then, later on, I thought “that’s kind of very interesting the way Elton gets a little bit of paper with words on it, and then he puts it into a beautiful song.” I’ve been slightly jealous of that. I’ve always worked at it, not to say you haven’t, Elton. But anyway. I think it’s great, you are a fantastic partnership, and it is really fabulous you get this award. You more than deserve it. You’ve written some of the greatest songs of the last fifty years. So, well done, congratulations both, I love you.

Paul McCartney

From Elton John & Bernie Taupin : The 2024 Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song (

From About  |  The Gershwin Prize  |  Events at the Library of Congress  |  Library of Congress (

The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song is the nation’s highest award for influence, impact and achievement in the field of popular song. It was established in 2007 to recognize and honor the artists whose creative works, both printed and recorded, are collected, preserved, made accessible, and valued by the nation’s library. It acknowledges the preeminent place of popular song in modern society and its vital role in expressing and deepening the personal and shared values of our time.

Gershwin Honorees are selected by the Librarian of Congress in consultation with music specialists within the Library, former Gershwin Prize Honorees, and eminent outside experts in the field, including scholars, publishers, producers, composers and performers.

The main criteria for selection include:

  • Artistic merit
  • Achievement and influence in promoting music as a vehicle for musical expression and cultural understanding
  • Impact and achievement in entertaining and informing audiences
  • Inspiration of a new generation of composers and performers

The Gershwin Prize is celebrated in an all-star concert in Washington D.C., which is filmed and later broadcast on a national network or streaming channel. Other related programs often include a taped public interview with the Librarian, press events and a curated exhibit of Library collection materials highlighting the musical achievements of the Honoree. All public events are recorded and archived, and many are accessible on this website.

The Gershwin Prize honors the legacy of the great song-writing team George and Ira Gershwin whose vast collection, including music manuscripts, sketches, scrapbooks, personal and legal papers and realia, resides in the Library of Congress. The Gershwin Prize medal awarded to each Honoree is fashioned after the Congressional Gold Medal awarded posthumously in 1985 to the Gershwin brothers for “outstanding and invaluable contributions to American music, theatre and culture.”

From Home  |  The Gershwin Prize  |  Events at the Library of Congress  |  Library of Congress (

Last updated on April 17, 2024


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