Elton John won't play 'Candle in the Wind' in front of Prince William and Harry

Elton John plays a specially re-written version of his song "Candle in the Wind" during the funeral service for Diana, Princess of Wales at London's Westminster Abbey. (AP Photo/Paul Hackett, Pool)

Elton John has divulged that he would never play Candle in the Wind in front of Princes Harry and William after performing it at their mother Princess Diana's 1997 funeral.

The song was originally written in 1973 about Marilyn Monroe, however, John altered the lyrics as a tribute to his friend upon her untimely death.

"I would have preferred not to have made the record and for her to still be alive, but it was what it was," the 72-year-old shared with Billboard. "It raised 37 million pounds for her foundation because Bernie and I gave up [our] writing credits.

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"We sold 60,000 in India in one day, and I had never sold a record in India before. It was a memento of grief and love for her. I didn't play that song for a couple of years on the road because it was too close to home.

Singer Elton John speaks with Prince Harry and Prince William on stage during the "Concert for Diana" held at Wembley Stadium, Wembley, London, England on July 1, 2007 (Photo by Edmond Terakopian/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

"Other than at Princess Diana's funeral, I've never, ever played it in front of Prince William or Prince Harry. Even the Marilyn Monroe version, I wouldn't play it in front of them."

Prince Harry was just 12 years old when his mother died, while his older brother William was 15.

Since Princess Diana’s death, John has maintained a relationship with the princes, even performing at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding luncheon in May last year.

Diana, Princess of Wales, left, meets rock star Elton John on her arrival at Wembley Stadium for the London end of the Live Aid famine relief concert for Africa. (AP Photo/Rota/Pool)

He leapt to the defence of the young royal couple earlier in the year after they received criticism for flying in private jets despite their environmental campaigning.

John explained that he was "deeply distressed" by the "distorted and malicious account in the press surrounding the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s private stay" at his home in Nice.

“To maintain a high level of much-needed protection, we provided them with a private jet flight," he went on before stating that he had made a donation to Carbon Footprint, an emissions offsetting organisation.