Billy Joel

Well, sure, besides Leonard Cohen.

I like the one Simon wrote about divorcing Princess Leia.

She says ‘‘Maybe these emotions are
As near to love as love will ever be’’
So I agree

Then the moon breaks
She takes the corner that’s all she takes
She moves on

Even he’s not a big fan of that one.

Excellent interview with Billy on Howard Stern’s show yesterday where he came in and played and talked about his songs, and Paul McCartney actually.
he writes all the time, but prefers not to mess up songs with lyrics.
Seeing how instrumentals won’t go over too well in pop music he just doesn’t bother recording or releasing music anymore.

Sorta makes me sad, as I would totally buy a CD of just him playing music on his piano.

I was, I thought, pretty clearly referring to pop music. I don’t recall Cohen showing up on any Top-40 stations that I ever listened to. I’m more partial to the Gershwin brothers, anyway :)

Love him, “Just the Way You Are” is my wife and I’s song. We also saw him in concert just four days before our wedding in 1994 which was awesome. My faves are “Movin’ Out”, “My Life”, “You May Be Right”, “Pressure”, and “Allentown”.

bump , came across this interview article while surfing today’s news…

Billy Joel on Not Working and Not Giving Up Drinking

small snip it:

I haven’t put out an album in 20 years. Let’s face it. I am an oldies act. I just don’t want it to be like when you watch Channel 13 and there’s the Delltones or some English band from the ’60s, and they’re real crotchety and they look terrible, and I go, “Oh, God, I don’t want to be on that show.” I haven’t worked for three years. I’m going to play in Australia. I want to see how it feels to work again, I want to see if I think I’m still any good, because if I’m not any good, I’d consider retiring. If I don’t think I’m any good, I don’t care how much I can make, I don’t care how many people want me to, I’m going to stop doing it. It has to be fun. You have to feel good about it.

Let me not rag on him too hard in a thread filled with fans, but while I enjoyed plenty of his music on the radio back in the day, it all seemed sort of artificial to me somehow. Hard to say exactly what I mean, since most songwriters and pop performers naturally do what they think people will like, nothing wrong with that – that’s what pop is after all – but Billy Joel’s stuff seemed even more that way than others. But he clearly had plenty of talent, anyway.

I think the problem with him was that he was a serious songwriter in a pop songwriter’s label straightjacket. There are definitely moments of high talent in his writing, comparable to Springsteen at least IMHO, but I think his record label manufactured him as something he wasn’t quite. A good serious songwriter can always write a good pop song if they put their mind to it, and he did several times, but I always felt he ought to have been marketed more in the Springsteen or Dylan mold.

I used to be a big fan but I have trouble mustering the interest to listen to him know. I respect tremendously his ability to compose and play music. I find his lyrics to reside just north of crap most of the time, which pushes his stuff to the back whenever I want to listen to music.

Billy Joel crossed over in such a big way, though, and his sound was much more pop-friendly than any of the aforementioned singer-songwriters. I started out with The Nylon Curtain and wore the cassette out. To hear him say that he hasn’t put out an album in 20 years is such a mind-blower. He has always been so out-front with his thinking on his career. The songs he thought were good and those that weren’t, why or why not he was going play songs. That “Piano-man” ™ sound that he and Elton John perfected, does anyone in pop do that any more?

I think the music biz changed so that any listener can get exactly what he or she wants. So a Billy Joel today will have a hard time getting heard outside their niche. Back in the day I listened to him because I had to, he was all over the radio and the radio was all I had to provide variety. Now someone can be all over the radio and I won’t hear them since I don’t listen to the radio, I don’t need to anymore.

Also I think in general it’s not about songs anymore, it’s about production. With most of the Billy Joel music I like, the attraction is not the sound(a piano is a piano) or the voice, but it’s the way with words he had. These days I’d say pop music is about the sound first and foremost.

How do you listen to new music, if not from either “normal” radio or Internet radio stations, which seem to be pretty much like normal radio from the few I’ve listened to? I’m not familiar with the new-fangled distribution channels you’re alluding to.

EDIT: Oh, and about Billy Joel - I have a fair amount in my regular rotation. Including stuff that most folks might sneer at, like “No Man’s Land.” On the other hand, I think some things he did that were popular like “Uptown Girl” were crap. That one stands out in light of the comments upthread because his voice sounds artificial on that track, like he’s trying to be one of the Beach Boys and failing miserably.

Actually, I’m pretty sure the song was a deliberate homage to Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, so the fact that Joel doesn’t sound like himself in it is perhaps unsurprising.

31 years since his last pop album.
17 years since his last single release.

Wow he has new song out. When I saw the thread get bumped, I thought for sure the guy had died.

New music, and he’s touring starting next month. I’m gonna try to see him at MSG this summer.

a teaser for a single? gimme a break.

Anyway, I remember as a kid when my older sister got this album. The cover still freaks me out to this day.

I have seen him twice live, once in Wembley Arena in London in 1989 and then the summer of 2022 at MSG. He still has the chops. He is also the reason I play piano. Hope the new music is decent.

I saw a double header show with Billy Joel and Elton John some time back in the 90s. At the time I was a much bigger fan of Elton’s music, but I do remember coming away with a very favorable opinion of Joel’s performance and showmanship. And looks like he’s got a show booked in Seattle, maybe I’ll catch him again.