Elton John has apparently recovered quite nicely from an appendectomy earlier this summer. On Monday night at the London Palladium, as reported by Billboard and Rolling Stone, he received the inaugural Brits Icon award, a new category of the BRIT Awards to be given to individuals deemed to have a “lasting impact” on British culture.
The award was given by Rod Stewart, who reportedly humorously referred to Elton John as “the second best rock singer ever.” After receiving the award, John took to the stage to perform a set of memorable hits, along with a preview of “Mexican Vacation,” the lead single off his upcoming album The Diving Board. The new album is scheduled for a September 24 release.
The event was John’s first public appearance and performance since cancelling a tour earlier this summer over a severe, potentially life-threatening case of appendicitis requiring weeks of antibiotic treatment followed by surgery to remove the appendix. John had referred to himself as a “ticking time bomb” regarding the illness, adding that he was “lucky and grateful to be alive.”