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Sir Elton John's video tribute to drummer Roger Pope
12:08pm Tuesday 1st October 2013 in News
IT was a rock ’n’ roll sendoff to a legendary musician from one of the biggest singing stars in the world.
Dozens of mourners said a final farewell to renowned Southampton drummer Roger Pope, including Sir Elton John, who paid a personal tribute to his late friend.
As reported by the Daily Echo, 66- year-old Roger died just hours after tying the knot with long-term partner Sue Tressider in Southampton General Hospital, having fought a tough battle with cancer.
And yesterday the popular musician received a fitting farewell as scores of people packed into the Wessex Vale Crematorium in Bubb Lane, West End.
Many who turned out wore T-shirts emblazoned with The Soul Agents, the Southampton band in which Roger played drums alongside a young Rod Stewart.
After the emotional service, it was time to celebrate his life as dozens of people – including former bandmates and members of the city’s rock ’n’ roll fraternity – packed into The Brook in Portswood.
But a particularly special moment came with a touching video tribute from Sir Elton, in which the pop knight dedicated his chart-topping hit Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me to his former drummer.
He had heard the news of Roger’s death just an hour before he went on stage to perform in Las Vegas, and spoke of their friendship and his sadness at the news.
Singer Kiki Dee also penned a tribute to her “loyal friend” – his wicker coffin having been carried into the crematorium with a drum-shaped wreath, to the sounds of Sir Elton and Kiki’s hit duet Don’t Go Breaking My Heart and Kiki’s I’ve Got the Music in Me.
Funeral celebrant Lesley Nash said that Roger was known to so many because of his drumming skills.
She said: “His unique and instinctive style of drumming made him a must-have session musician during the 70s and 80s.
“It was well known in the music business that Roger was one of the best drummers in the world.”
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