The Fox (Elton John album)

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The Fox
The fox (Elton John album) coverart.jpg
Studio album by
Released20 May 1981
RecordedAugust, December 1979
January–June 1980
StudioSuper Bear Studios (Nice, France); Sunset Sound Recorders, The Village Recorder and Davlen Studios (Los Angeles); Abbey Road Studios (London).
GenreRock, soft rock, pop rock, new wave
LabelGeffen (US)
Rocket (UK)
ProducerChris Thomas, Elton John, Clive Franks
Elton John chronology
21 at 33
The Fox
Jump Up!
Singles from The Fox
  1. "Nobody Wins"
    Released: 8 May, 1981
  2. "Just Like Belgium"
    Released: July 1981
  3. "Chloe"
    Released: July 1981
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic2.5/5 stars[1]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars[2]

The Fox is the fifteenth studio album by English singer Elton John, released in 1981. With sales of approx. 300,000 US copies, it was one of Elton's poorest-selling albums in the United States.

The track "Elton's Song" was banned from radio play in some countries due to its content, which included references to homosexuality.[3] The album was produced by John, Clive Franks and, for the first time, Chris Thomas, who would produce many more albums with John through most of the 1980s and '90s.

Five of the songs (noted below) were recorded during the sessions for his previous album 21 at 33. All B-sides released around this time were also from those sessions.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
  1. "Breaking Down Barriers" (John, Gary Osborne) – 4:42
  2. "Heart in the Right Place" (John, Osborne) – 5:15*
  3. "Just Like Belgium" (John, Bernie Taupin)– 4:10
  4. "Nobody Wins" (Jean-Paul Dreau, Osborne) – 3:40
  5. "Fascist Faces" (John, Taupin) – 5:12
Side two
  1. "Carla/Etude" (John) – 4:46*
  2. "Fanfare" (John, James Newton Howard) – 1:26*
  3. "Chloe" (John, Osborne) – 4:40*
  4. "Heels of the Wind" (John, Taupin) – 3:35
  5. "Elton's Song" (John, Tom Robinson) – 3:02*
  6. "The Fox" (John, Taupin) – 5:20

(*): Recorded in August and December 1979, January 1980 and produced by John and Clive Franks. Chris Thomas produced the other tracks.

In 2003, Mercury/Universal and The Rocket Record Company reissued the album on CD, remastered by Gary Moore. The line-up contained no bonus tracks. On the 2003 reissue and remaster (and European) CD, "Carla/Etude", "Fanfare" and "Chloe" are combined into one track, making it a nine-track album.

French and Quebec releases of the album included "J'Veux de la Tendresse" in place of "Nobody Wins". "Tendresse" was the original French version of the song which Osborne wrote English lyrics for, thus transforming the song into "Nobody Wins".

After 1981, only "Chloe", "Just Like Belgium", "Nobody Wins" and "Elton's Song" would be included in Elton's Jump Up tour in 1982. While "Chloe", "Just Like Belgium" and "Nobody Wins" have never been performed again since that tour, "Elton's Song" was performed a few times on a solo tour in 1999. Since then, however, Elton has also stopped performing that song.

However, since the album's release, Elton would perform "Carla/Etude" on his 1986 world tour with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and on subsequent solo tours, plus on a set of 2004 shows with the Royal Academy of Music Orchestra, making it the only song off the album that was performed up to 2010 on a tour with Ray Cooper.


Song Format
"Fools in Fashion" "Nobody Wins" 7" (US/UK)[4]
"Nobody Wins" (extended version) "Nobody Wins" 12" (US)
"Je Veux De La Tendresse" (French version of "Nobody Wins") "Nobody Wins" 12" (US)
"Can't Get Over Getting Over Losing You" "Just Like Belgium" 7" (UK)
"Tortured" "Chloe" 7" (US)

Visions: The videos from The Fox[edit]

Visions, released on VHS in 1982, is a video of all ten songs recorded for The Fox album. It is notable as one of the first long-form video releases of an album. The collection was also released on RCA's CED video disc, a precursor to the Laserdisc and DVD, but has not been released since. The video for "Elton's Song", which dealt with the story of a teenager boy's admiration for another teenage boy he yearns for, but is too shy to confront his feelings, was excluded from the UK video release because the public school it was filmed in objected to the theme of the song. All the videos were conceptualised by Keith Williams and directed by Russell Mulcahy.[citation needed]


Track numbering refers to CD and digital releases of the album.


  • Producers: Chris Thomas (Tracks #1, 3-5, 9, 11); Clive Franks and Elton John (Tracks #2, 6-8, 10).
  • Engineered by Bill Price
  • Assistant Engineer: Karen Siegel
  • Art Direction: Richard Seireeni
  • Photography: Eric Blum
  • Elton John Photo: Terry O'Neill



  1. ^ "The Fox". Allmusic. Retrieved 16 February 2012.
  2. ^ [1] Archived 16 May 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Bullock, Darryl W. (2017). David Bowie Made Me Gay: 100 Years of LGBT Music. Abrams Press.
  4. ^ Elton John - Nobody Wins, retrieved 23 June 2019
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ a b Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  9. ^ " Elton John – The Fox" (ASP). Hung Medien (in German). Retrieved 29 October 2011.
  10. ^ Library and Archives Canada. Archived 29 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 29 January 2012
  11. ^ " Elton John – The Fox" (ASP). Hung Medien (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  12. ^ "InfoDisc : Tous les Albums classés par Artiste > Choisir Un Artiste Dans la Liste" (in French). Archived from the original (PHP) on 10 September 2013. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  13. ^ " Elton John – The Fox" (ASP). Hung Medien. Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  14. ^ " Elton John – The Fox" (ASP). Hung Medien. VG-lista. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  15. ^ " Elton John – The Fox" (ASP) (in Swedish). Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  16. ^ "Chart Stats – Elton John – The Fox" (PHP). UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  17. ^ "allmusic ((( The Fox > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  18. ^ "Album Search: Elton John – The Fox" (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  19. ^ "Les Albums (CD) de 1981 par InfoDisc" (in French). Archived from the original (PHP) on 29 December 2012. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
  20. ^ "Major fight economics with quirky rock originals". Billboard. 12 June 1982. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
  21. ^ "British album certifications – Elton John – The Fox". British Phonographic Industry. Select albums in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Type The Fox in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.