I had a very minor thought as I watched Elton John perform “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” three nights ago. The thought was “this isn’t as good as the songs he and Bernie Taupin churned out in the early to mid ’70s.” Yeah, I know…duhhh.

Nobody would call “Elderberry Wine” (’73) one of their greatest, but it’s at least eight or nine times better than what I heard on the Oscar telecast. To say I absolutely worship the “Elderberry” piano chords and changes is putting it mildly. “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” is a passable tune, but the positive-self-regard lyrics are, no offense, banal. Yes, so are the “Elderberry” lyrics, but that song has a certain rowdy verve and spirit.