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Elton John performs in Austin as Texas lawmakers debate gay marriage

Elton John performs in Austin as Texas lawmakers debate gay marriage

A day after announcing plans to marry his longtime partner, Elton John performed just blocks from the Texas capitol in Austin, where lawmakers are working to put a gay marriage ban in the state constitution. The British singer performed Tuesday at a fund-raiser for tennis star Andy Roddick's charitable foundation, with Republican governor Rick Perry also in attendance. In an interview with the Associated Press, John would not discuss personal matters, including Monday's reports that he plans to marry David Furnish, his partner of 11 years, later this year. The same day as John's marriage announcement, the Texas house of representatives approved a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. State law already bans same-sex marriage from being recognized. John, a longtime tennis fan, and Roddick said they became friends talking about the sport and as doubles partners at another charity fund-raiser. But the two have never faced each other on the tennis court. "I don't want to face that serve, thank you very much," John joked. The British rocker said he didn't think twice when Roddick invited him to attend the event. "Austin is my favorite Texas city because it's so green," John said. "It's a fun town. It's a great music town, always has been. If I was going to live in Texas, this is where I'd live." The fund-raiser marks the first expansion of the Florida-based Andy Roddick Foundation into Texas. The organization has raised $1.5 million for at-risk children since Roddick, a 22-year-old Austin resident, started the foundation at 18. "That's pretty amazing, to be so young and want to give back at such an early age," John said. "It really impressed me. Someone who does that and wants to give back is really worth supporting. It's only fair that I support Andy, because what he's doing is great anyway." Olympic champion figure skater Sarah Hughes and country crooner Pam Tillis also attended the fund-raiser. (AP)

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