Friday, June 10, 2011

Billy Joel - Another Amazing Artist!

Joel & Paul McCartney
While on the topic of television, I was fortunate enough to catch a Billy Joel concert on PBS last night as well! Boy did I have an active TV night! I had a tough time deciding which of the two was going to be better. He performed at the Shea Stadium in New York, with over 110,000 fans all eager to feel the rhythm of this incredibly talented man, but they got soOOo much more, with emotionally charged performances by Tony Bennet, John Mayer & even country super-star Garth Brookes AND Sir Paul McCartney! This show had me rocking, singing, dancing, strumming, yelling and almost in tears all at the same time. Taking place in July 2008, this was the "last rock & roll performance" to be held there, as the stadium was torn down in 2009.

 'Piano Man' - Billy Joel at The Shea.

I have come to know and love Billy Joel ever since early childhood, seeing that he was one of my Step Dad's favourites and had owned just about all of his classics.  I can remember quite clearly, the double disc Collector's Edition that he had and that I LOVED that featured all of his greatest hits such as 'Piano Man', 'Uptown Girl', 'Goodnight Saigon', 'Longest Time' and 'Allentown'.  People often don't know (or think) that someone my age would be interested, to say the least, in this type of music but it's rather refreshing to hear music that tells of another time. A time when things were different, tells a man's story of his heart, his life, love and the struggles that many face. As I said in another post, music is one of my passions and so it's great when I can find uplifting and inspirational artists that draw your emotions to the surface. He also happens to be a great conversation starter and generation bridge between folks my age and the older era.

I love the fact that he is an all around artist. William Martin 'Billy' Joel writes his own songs, plays the piano, sings, plays the guitar, the harmonica and is just as passionate about one as he is about the other. Born on May 9, 1949, Joel is 62 years old, but don't let that fool you! The energy that he exudes during a performance is absolutely breath-taking and even a person who has no clue who he is, would be swaying along to the music. After his first hit, 'Piano Man', seen in the above video, he has become the sixth best-selling recording artist and the third best-selling solo artist in the United States, according to the RIAA.  The way he plays the piano, for me, is most astounding! His fingers are like crazy ants and the music is crazy/beautiful!  Giving tribute to the Mets fans, he played 'Take Me Out To The Ball Game' and the crowd went mad. Followed by a lovely rendition of 'Shameless'.
Joel & Garth Brookes

Built in 1964, The Shea Stadium had been the home of the New York Mets for 45 years. Designed as a multi-purpose stadium, Shea soon became the birthplace of arena rock when the Beatles appeared there August 15, 1965, establishing the ballpark as a pinnacle venue for rock's biggest names: The Who, The Police, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen and others have all played there

John Mayer & Joel

This was a truly electrifying event and I wish I'd been there in person! On my bucket list is to 
get the chance to see him, as well as a few other favs perform live!

I'll leave you with just a few of his hits from the 80's: 

 'Longest Time'

 'Uptown Girl'

 'Just The Way You Are'

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