The Cover Uncovered: ‘Tumbleweed Connection’, Elton John
We continue our dive in to the artwork of some of the most enigmatic albums of all time with Elton John’s Tumbleweed Connection.
DJM (UK) / Uni (US)
October 30, 1970
This was Elton John’s third album release, following the success of debut Empty Sky and his self-titled sophomore LP. All songs are written by John and Bernie Taupin, with the exception of “Love Song” by Lesley Duncan. The album was recorded at Trident Studios, London, England in March 1970 and released in October of the same year.
The duo tone wraparound cover photo for the album was taken at the Sheffield Park railway station, approximately 30 miles south of London on the Bluebell Railway in the County of Sussex. An old line which straddles the cover between West and East Sussex and is still a scene of traditional rail.
Photographer David Markham captured John (seated to the right in the photo but appearing to the left on the front cover, shown above) and Taupin (standing to the left, on the back cover) in front of the 1930s-era station to represent the album’s Rural Americana concept, despite the English location.
Additional photos were made from the interior of a train on the rail line for the album liner notes and libretto.