Four Bluegrass Boys Cover an Elton John Classic and It Is Outstanding

You’ve probably heard Elton John’s “Rocket Man,” but have you ever heard a bluegrass version of it? If not — and you probably haven’t — you’re in for a treat, all thanks to a very unusual and highly talented band called Iron Horse.

Although its roots go back to the 1970s, Iron Horse was founded in 2000 in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. It’s a bluegrass group that has done some highly creative cross-genre work, including adaptations of heavy metal. As its own official history aptly describes the band: “Anyone listening to the innovative, hard-driving instrumental licks and strong, precise harmonies of this bluegrass band will want to strap into their seat and prepare to be thrilled with the ride.”


“Rocket Man” was released in 1972 and has become an iconic Elton John classic (he composed the song in collaboration with Bernie Taupin). It’s not clear whether the song was inspired by a short story by science fiction author Ray Bradbury or Taupin’s own sighting of what he thought was a shooting star. In any case, the song’s official title is “Rocket Man (I Think It’s Going to Be a Long, Long Time),” a reference to the long voyage awaiting an astronaut who’s about to leave on a mission to Mars.

According to Elton John biographer Elizabeth Rosenthal, the song depicts the job of an astronaut as no longer being heroic but an “everyday occupation.” Check out the video posted below, and you’ll soon be tapping your toes to Iron Horse’s bluegrass “Rocket Man.” It’s racked up more than 5 million views — that’s a lot of toes tapping.

Four Bluegrass Boys Cover an Elton John Classic and It Is Outstanding