Elton John / Friends
To my ears, they are equal to Sir Paul and Richard Starkey MBE, Wrecking Crew, Stax, and Muscle Shoals, as the most charismatic and elite rhythm sections in the realm of pop rock.
Sir Reggie and Bernie’s brilliant soundtrack to the flop of a film Friends (1971) featured four fantastic John / Taupin gems interspersed with background music composed with orchestrator Paul Buckmaster.
EJ’s iconic rhythm section of bassist Dee Murray and drummer Nigel Olsson was further enhanced by way of John’s frequent collaborator / guitarist Caleb Quaye, along with virtuoso vocalists Madeline Bell, Lesley Duncan, and Kay Garner.
“Friends,” “Honey Roll,” “Michelle’s Song,” and “Can I Put You On” would have made a terrific Elton John Band EP as the lads all flex their rhythm and blues chops. Dee and Nigel are masterful as usual, working pocket grooves with their signature rhythmic dialog.