Elton came on to perform with his band the 1977 song which became a 2003 dance hit Are You Ready For Love, in his present, mature voice which left no one accusing his of a lip-synch, when he was the star attraction at the first-ever World Idol contest on January 1, 2004.
The other guest performer was Victoria Beckham.
The judges focused on Norwegian Kurt Nilsen's gap-toothed grin, but television viewers were more impressed with the voice of the one-time plumber as he won with a great rendition of U2's Beautiful Day.
"You have the voice of an Idol but you look like a Hobbit," said Australian judge Ian Dickson. "If this were Middle-earth Idol, you'd walk it." UK/US judge Simon Cowell added: "If this was a radio contest, you would walk away with it."
U.S. entry, the hot favourite to win, Kelly Clarkson, was also tipped by Beckham, but the viewers decided that if looks can kill, better vote for something safer - real aural talent.
[Ed. Slightly biased as I voted for Kurt last week too!](World) Idol - Thursday, December 18 2003 at 09:07:44