LONDON , Elton John was a member of many exclusive clubs throughout the years, but none quite like the one he officially joined Wednesday.
Prince Charles, a Windsor Castle musician and charity patron, was investitured as a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour.
This is the highest award Charles' mother, Queen Elizabeth II can bestow on citizens across Britain and the Commonwealth. The order also includes the monarch, who is 95 years old.
Initiated by King George V in 1917, the award honors individuals who have made a significant contribution to science, medicine, arts, or government over a long time.
Current members include British environmentalist David Attenborough and Margaret Atwood, a Canadian author, and Sebastian Coe (one of Britain's greatest ever athletes).
This group, which has in the past included Winston Churchill, British wartime prime minister, and Stephen Hawking scientist, can only hold 65 members at any given time, with the sovereign not included.
John, after receiving the gold medallion bearing the inscribed "In action faithfully and in honour clear", said that he was surprised to receive the letter.
John, who was knighted in 1998 by the queen for his charity and music services, joined the Companions of Honour on the queen's honors lists in late 2019.
After recent hip surgery, the 74-year old singer-songwriter reflected on a career which saw him release a hit single in each decade, including "Your Song," Rocketman, and "Candle in the Wind." He also played a major role in a number charities, such as the Elton John AIDS Foundation.
John Furnish, his husband, said, "I've had an incredible life, music has been a part of my life. "So this is just to remind you that there's still so much to do. There's more to be done for music and charity, and I feel so blessed.
The farewell tour was pushed back to next year. However, it is clear that he is more than just standing after the operation on his right hip.
He said, "I have had a hip replacement, but I'm full-of-beans and I'm full on zest, but this was just a prompter for me to say 'come back, you've got more things to do now'."