In April 1972, Apollo II took man from the earth to the surface of the moon for the fifth (and next to last) time. The day after the rocket took off on it's 11-day journey, Elton John released his classic rock ballad Rocket Man. It was the lead single off his upcoming album Honkey Chateau, and it became his biggest hit at the time. The song was inspired by the 1951 Ray Bradbury science fiction short story The Illustrated Man. The song was written by Bernard Taupin and produced by Gus Dudgeon - the producer behind David Bowie's 1969 song Space Oddity. Despite that, and the fact that the two songs inspired by space exploration coincided directly with Apollo missions, Bowie and Dudgeon insisted that Bowie's Space Oddity had no influence. Before long "Rocket Man" became a nickname for Elton John, and in 1973 he launched a record label named Rocket Records. In 2019, a biographical musical film about Elton John was released titled Rocketman. Amongst the movie's many awards, Elton John and longtime writing partner Bernard Taupin won an Oscar, Golden Globe and Critics Choice Award for Best Original Song for the film's original song - (I'm Gonna) Love Me Again.
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