Rock and blues legend LEON RUSSELL has publicly thanked pal Elton John for rescuing him from obscurity, revealing fellow pianist BRUCE HORNSBY did the same thing - but failed to respect the old-timer.
The ageing singer/songwriter, who inspired Elton when the Brit was starting out in the late 1960s, has bounced back from surgery for a brain fluid leak to record new album The Union with the Rocket Man.
And he insists the call to record an album with his old friend came at a very good time.
Russell tells USA Today, "It's nice to have somebody come back to the rest area of life and pull in and pick you up.
"Bruce Hornsby tried but he didn't want to let me do Leon Russell. He wanted to show me what I was doing wrong."