Elton John was reportedly left terrified after his recording studio was plagued by unexplained paranormal activity, according to his longtime partner Bernie Taupin.
Taupin, who was with the hitmaker at the time, recalled the frightening incidents during their recording sessions at Château d’Hérouville near Paris in the 1980s, in his new autobiography, Scattershot.
It was at this 18th century property that the musical duo recorded John’s albums; Don’t shoot me, I’m just the piano player, goodbye Yellow Brick Road and Honky Chateau.
In an extract from Taupin’s memoir, obtained by the Daily Star, he detailed a number of inexplicable ghostly events that took place, including hearing voices, being pulled and tapped on the shoulder by “invisible hands”.
The 73-year-old wrote: “There was always talk of restless spirits and ghosts, strange and inexplicable happenings that spread from one customer to the next.
“I’m by nature very skeptical of the paranormal, but settle into a spooky castle on a stormy night and confidence in practicality flies out the window.
“It all started with a panicked cat and a self-igniting fireplace. I mean the fire literally started on its own and the cat looked like it had been electrocuted.
Recalling one frightening evening, Taupin said he, John and his friends were terrified when the property’s lights went out before the songwriter noticed the mirror had been “scratched from the inside out the outside”.
And when it came time to listen again to the tracks they had recorded in the castle, Taupin claimed there were “audible moans and groans” from the spirits.
He continued: “The gospel truth is that when we listened to tracks in the studio the next day, there were most definitely audible moans and groans on the tape that had disappeared when we played them again later.
“The Phantoms had obviously given up on a recording career and we were happy to get out of Dodge. The castle closed its doors for good in 1985, a year after its debt-ridden owner committed suicide in a nearby hotel.