All Products
Popular Music

Search by Keywords:


Disclaimer: This web-site, in no way, has any direct
affiliation with: Billy Joel,
Columbia Records,
Sony Music, Joel Songs,
Inc., Maritime Music, Inc.,
or any other Billy Joel
related entity on the internet.
[ Cold Spring Harbor ]
[ Piano Man ]
[ Streetlife Serenade ]
[ Turnstiles ]
[ The Stranger ]
[ 52nd Street ]
[ Glass Houses ]
[ Songs In The Attic ]
[ The Nylon Curtain ]
[ An Innocent Man ]
[ Greatest Hits: Voume I & Volume II ]
[ The Bridge ]
[ Kohuept ]
[ Storm Front ]
[ River of Dreams ]
[ Greatest Hits: Volume III ]
[ 2000 Years: The Millennium Concert ]
[ The Ultimate Collection ]
[ The Essential Billy Joel ]
[ Fantasies & Delusions ]
[ Movin' Out: Original Cast Recording ]
[ The Harbor Sessions ]
[ 12 Gardens Live ]
[ The Hits ]

[ Live From Long Island ]
[ The Video Album: Volume I ]
[ The Video Album: Volume II ]
[ Live From Leningrad, USSR ]
[ A Matter of Trust ]
[ Live At Yankee Stadium ]
[ Eye of the Storm ]
[ Shades of Grey ]
[ Greatest Hits: Volume III ]
[ The Essential Video Collection ]
[ Rock Masters: Billy Joel ]
[ The Last Play at Shea ]

"'Big Shot': Ticket Upgrade A Nice Perk"
By: William Sokolic
(March 7th, 2006)

Not being the reporter who covers the music scene with any regularity, I don't get choice seats to top concerts. But as luck would have it, my wife Carol and I, our daughter, Becky and son-in-law, Mike, got the best seats in the house for last month's Billy Joel show at the Wachovia Center.

Second row from the stage, close enough to exchange smiles with saxophonist Mark Rivera. Close enough to shake hands with Billy at the end of the two-plus hour show.

And we have Billy to thank for our good fortune.

Our adventure began with four first-row tickets purchased by Becky and Mike as Chanukah presents for us. First row was a relative term, as the row was in the upper deck toward the rear of the arena, the best available at the time.

We arrived early, a rarity for me. After enjoying a Billy Joel tribute band at the Cingular Pavilion, we headed to our seats almost half an hour before the 8:00pm showtime. A few minutes later, Becky departed for a trip to the restroom, but she didn't go very far. She ran back all smiles, saying we were getting new seats. Behind her stood a congenial man wearing what looked like legitimate credentials as part of Billy's entourage.

We turned in our tickets - to be put back on sale to the public - and received four new ones for floor seats in front of the stage. We trotted down a stairwell to the first floor and made our way toward the appointed seats, still not convinced this was for real.

"Maybe this is a scam, and we'll find out we have no tickets at all," Mike said.

Of course, we heard about Billy Joel's penchant for helping out the poor people stuck in the nosebleed sections by setting aside tickets up front and close. Heck, our daughter, Kelly, was a beneficiary of this policy when she attended his concert in Philadelphia years back.

Sure enough, we joined a group of other lucky ticket holders on the floor, sharing a section with folks who get good seats because they're significant others with members of the band.

The tickets set aside are not just a reward for those of us saddled with seats far, far away. I hear it's also Billy's way of sticking it to scalpers who would normally scoop up such ducats to sell at inflated prices.

The concert kicked off with "Prelude/Angry Young Man." We were thrilled. My posse danced in the aisle in front of the stage throughout the performance, right on through "Piano Man."

Truth be told, there were some downsides to all this. Our four tickets were the ones closest to the amps. In addition to the distortion that comes from sitting in such proximity, our ears rang for days afterward. Then there were the jealous concertgoers who tried to ruin our good fortune by sneaking up front, blocking our view. Carol turned downright hostile to one particular gent, thrusting her leg forward to block his way.

Still, we wouldn't trade the experience. The positives outweighed the negatives.

I can't give you tips on how to be among the chosen if you attend one of Billy Joel's dates in Philly. But I do have a couple of suggestions. First off, don't buy real good tickets. Upper-level seating enhances your opportunity. And second, get to your seats early.

Who knows? If the cards fall right, you too might get that offer you can't refuse.

"Billy Joel Notes"
By: Michael Klein
(March 9th, 2006)

Billy Joel is not the only Joel playing Philly this month. His daughter, Alexa Ray Joel, who sings and plays piano, will be at Old City's Tin Angel on March 21st, 2006 - one night after his show at the Wachovia Center.

And you know how when an entertainer takes the stage, there may be someone pining backstage? Maybe panting a little? In Joel's case Tuesday night, it was his black pug, Fionoula. (Sabrina, his tan pug, was home.)

Joel broke up the joint with this greeting: "Thanks for buying all the tickets. I need the money [pause] for my car insurance. Oh, those premiums." 

"Joel Saying Hello To Hartford"
By: Kellie Lambert McGuire
(March 9th, 2006)

It must be the seven-year-itch.

That's how long it's been since Billy Joel hit the road solo, and he breaks his stretch with the first of four sold-out shows at the Hartford Civic Center on Friday. He returns to the Civic Center on March 23rd, 2006, March 28th, 2006, and April 2nd, 2006.

Since his last solo outing in 1999, Joel has appeared only on double bills with Elton John. Now, Joel is celebrating the release of "My Lives," a five-disc boxed set chronicling his musical evolution from his early days in Long Island bar bands to his classical compositions, as well as every pop hit in between.

Joel's Hartford shows will likely mirror the make-up of his latest compact disc. During a recent Philadelphia show, Joel visited every period in his career in a 29-song set. The song selections ranged from the obscure - such as "Everybody Loves You Now" and "All For Leyna" - to rarely performed compositions, including "You're My Home," and "The Entertainer." The Philly concert appealed to longtime fans, as the 56 year-old Joel swapped hits for lesser-known tunes.

Joel's career spans decades, with 33 Top 40 hits and 23 Grammy nominations since he signed his first solo recording contract in 1972. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, received a Grammy Legend Award, has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and has a Tony Award-winning Broadway musical, "Movin' Out," based on his music. He has sold more than 100 million records in the past quarter century and is one of the most popular recording artists and performers in the world.

In recent years, Joel has battled a few personal demons, with a stint in rehab for alcohol abuse. Apparently, he is coping with his addiction with a little humor. At that recent Philly show, Joel changed the lyric in "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" to reflect his newfound lifestyle: "Bottle of red, bottle of white - I won't be having either one tonight."

"Billy Joel Reels Off Hits With Rocker's Energy"
By: Eric Danton
(March 11th, 2006)

Someday, scientists decoding human DNA are going to find the Billy Joel strand.

You know it's there. It has to be. His songs are so culturally prominent, so catchy and singable, that it doesn't seem at all far-fetched that they would have altered our genetic makeup so that every person in this country knows all the words to at least two of his songs. OK, maybe that's a little far-fetched.

But still, even the relatively obscure songs seemed familiar when Joel performed the first of four shows Friday at the Hartford Civic Center. The lesser-known numbers, such as "Zanzibar" and "Everybody Loves You Now," were naturally crowded out by the hits during his 28-song, 2½ hour show, but at least a handful of people in the capacity crowd were standing and swaying or singing along during every single number.

It's no surprise that Joel knows how to pace a show: You start slow and build. Even so, the sheer number of well-known songs he was able to backload into his set list was staggering. "Sometimes A Fantasy" led into "Pressure," which gave way to "Goodnight Saigon" (complete with helicopter sound effects and rotor-mimicking strobe lights). Next it was "Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)," then "She's Always A Woman," followed by "Keeping The Faith." There aren't many artists who can reel off hits that way, and even fewer who can perform them with the energy and enthusiasm of a rock and roll convert so many years after they converted.

Joel played piano to start, jabbing rapid-fire at the keys as he and his band opened the show with "Prelude/Angry Young Man." Later, he switched to electric guitar for a few songs, including "A Matter of Trust," a frenetic version of "We Didn't Start The Fire" and what he described as a "religious song" - a cover of AC/DC's "Highway To Hell," sung by a roadie named Chainsaw. Really.

His '70s songs worked best live - they've held up better than some of his later material. But he made sure to include a variety of songs from across his career, including a stirring version of the blue-collar sea ballad "The Downeaster 'Alexa'" and the slightly acerbic "It's Still Rock and Roll To Me." Joel also displayed a sense of humor, especially about his well-documented difficulty driving cars of late. After thanking fans early on for paying to see him, he quipped, "I need the money. You wouldn't believe how much I pay for car insurance."

Joel played 25 songs during the regular set, and then returned for a three-song encore: the rocker "Only The Good Die Young," his slice-of-life operetta "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" and, of course, "Piano Man."

"Billy Joel and Fans, Drinking In The Nostalgia at Verizon Center"
By: Dave McKenna
(March 18th, 2006)

Billy Joel has been more of a punch line than a pop star in recent years, getting his name in late-night monologues by driving a car into a wall in 2002 and a tree in 2003 and an old lady's house in 2004. Joel, 56, also occasionally checks himself into rehab, and his latest wife is a lot younger than many of the songs he performed at Verizon Center on Thursday.

But even as he's become a terror in the Hamptons, Joel remains a joy on the stage. He made light of his driving and drinking foibles often in the nearly 2 ½-hour retrospective show. From behind his grand piano, he thanked the folks "up in the nosebleeds" for buying tickets. "I really do need the money," he said. "You wouldn't believe my car insurance."

And he transformed his romantic song "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" into a confession of temperance: "Bottle of red, bottle of white" he crooned, "I won't be having either one tonight."

The audience guzzled every nostalgic note Joel served. The show, with a set-list heavy with his oldest singles and deep album cuts (including "New York State of Mind" and "Everybody Loves You Now"), was designed more for his hard-core fans than were previous tours. Nothing was more quaint than Joel's "Captain Jack," an anti-slacker tune from 1973 that finds him mocking casual drug use and generally railing against so much of what '60s rock stood for. "It's Still Rock and Roll To Me," from 1980, meanwhile, was Joel's plea for fans not to abandon him while he rode out the new wave era. The fervor with which crowds still respond to that song indicates that his request was granted.

On the whole, the guy who dubbed himself "Billy The Kid" at the start of his career in the early '70s was revealed as a bridge between two other Killer Bs who debuted in the same decade - Barry Manilow and Bruce Springsteen. For all the tuff-rocker poses Joel struck back in the day, it's obvious that he, like Manilow, always had a lot of show tune in him. "She's Always A Woman" and "My Life," which Joel performed with a smile, packed as much schmaltz as any Manilow jingle, while 1978's "Zanzibar," with its be-boppy bridge, echoed "Copacabana." Small wonder Joel's songbook has already been turned into a successful Broadway musical ("Movin' Out," choreographed by Twyla Tharp).

Springsteen, by writing tunes such as "Factory" and "Promised Land," already had the blue-collar rockers in the pocket of his denim jacket by the time Joel went for the same demographic by penning "Allentown." Yet, Joel's song about a laid-off plant worker has aged best, thanks to a hook that combines melody and depression with Brian Wilson-like brilliance: "I won't be getting up today-ay-ay-ay-ay-ay-ay," Joel sang with a smile, as the crowd sang and smiled along.

Two years before Springsteen's "Born In The USA" came out, Joel played on the nation's Vietnam War veteran sympathies with his fabulous "Goodnight Saigon." A group of US military veterans, some with obvious wounds and far too young to have suffered them in Vietnam, stood arm in arm at the back of the stage and swayed while Joel reprised the war chronicle.

"Music Review: Billy Joel"
On Stop of First Solo Tour Since 1998, Singer Was Giddy and Loose

By: Melissa Ruggieri
(March 18th, 2006)

If there is such a thing as the perfect pop concert, Billy Joel has mastered it.

The pacing, the personality, the production and, most importantly, the immense, meaty song catalog are products of his veteran status.

But his giddy grins and loose playing Thursday night pointed to something rarer - his ability, 30-plus years into a stormy career, to still enjoy himself.

Take it as a lesson, kids, because there aren't too many bona fide tunesmiths of Joel's stature left - and surely no obvious ones following his trail.

On this brief solo outing, his first since 1998, Joel has rewarded the most dedicated fans - the ones who gag at the first pecked note of "Just The Way You Are" - with some little-played gems.

Tucked among a crisp "My Life" and wistful "New York State of Mind" were "Everybody Loves You Now," a snarky nonhit from his first album, and its cynical sister, "The Entertainer."

Forget, for a minute, that the latter two sounded record-perfect, with Joel's voice soaring cleanly through the Verizon Center - and this isn't a guy who normally soars.

Consider, instead, that those songs were written in 1971 and 1974, respectively, when Joel was in his 20s.

Who among today's forgettable mall rats with guitars has offered the searing insight of Joel's "The Entertainer," a guy who realized before he tasted his first royalty check that "Today I am your champion, I may have won your hearts. But I know the game, you'll forget my name, and I won't be here in another year if I don't stay on the charts?"

No need to answer, because there isn't one.

But the beauty of Joel's melody-driven compositions, richly flaunted by his five-piece band and three-piece horn section, is that they speak to blue collars and sophisticates alike.

From "Allentown," with its gritty "boom-cha" background vocals, to a jaunty, flamenco-dusted "Don't Ask Me Why," the 20,000 fans who packed the Verizon Center sang along mightily, the blue jeans next to pantsuits, the hair-sprayed hairdos next to backward baseball caps.

As impressive as Joel himself was, rattling off the frenzied keyboard notes of "Pressure" as frantically spinning white lights upped the tension, and even hitting those doo-wop high notes in "An Innocent Man," his fantastic band cannot be ignored.

Though this is Joel's first tour since 1974 without drummer Liberty DeVitto (the two had a bitter falling-out a couple of years ago), his longtime players Mark Rivera (sax, guitar, some percussion) and Crystal Taliefero (percussion, sax) and the back-from-the-old-days Richie Cannata (sax) smoked for 2½-hours, even making the career misstep "Keeping The Faith" tolerable.

But Joel, recently sober and remarried, was an unflagging presence onstage, kicking over his stool and sliding his rear along the keys at the end of his most intuitive pop stunner, "I Go To Extremes," and shuffle-running along a back ramp to show the behind-the-stagers some love.

At 56, he isn't popping handstands off his piano anymore, but he still shadowboxed with his microphone stand and whirled it in the air during a nonstop blitz of "Big Shot," "It's Still Rock and Roll To Me" and "You May Be Right."

His prickly sense of humor (with self-deprecating tendencies) also hasn't wavered. After thanking the audience for coming, he joked: "I really need the money. You wouldn't believe my car insurance," a jab at his unfortunate driving experiences.

And even the classic "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" was tailored to his recent ordeals. "A bottle of red, a bottle of white. I won't be having either one tonight" went the humorously recast lyric.

Usually, the pinnacle of a Joel concert is the closing singalong of "Piano Man." But on this night, it was "Goodnight Saigon" that provided the chills.

An already sad, serious song was injected with indescribable poignancy when a row of soldiers and Army veterans lined the back of the stage to sing the "we will all go down together" refrain. If your eyes were dry, your soul was obviously otherwise occupied.

Moments such as that are a reminder of Joel's relevance. He hasn't written any new pop music since 1993, yet his music is as crucial as ever.

"Joel's Bouncy Bill of Goods"
(March 19th, 2006)

He promised to vary his performance, playing not only his hits, but other tunes from his vast catalog. Yet in the end, Billy Joel offered a false bill of goods to those on hand for his Thursday performance at the Verizon Center.

Right from the start, the "Piano Man" appeared to forget his vow, serving up a panorama of his well-worn top 40 tunes rather than those that are lesser-known.

Still, the sold-out crowd was forgiving. And who could blame them? Mr. Joel's songbook teems with songs spun from the native New Yorker's mercurial state of mind. Alternately angry, cynical, romantic and chipper, his artistic persona spanned his three decades as a pop star even as he refused to embrace passing fads.

The 56 year-old - touring in support of "My Lives," his four-CD/one-DVD retrospective boxed set - kicked off the show with "Prelude/Angry Young Man," an early effort representative of the overly theatrical rock that characterized the 1970s. Its signature piano riff and delirious rush of keys were perfect. The acoustic touch, in fact, would have served him better than the swarm of horn players, percussionists and guitarists backing him on nearly every number. They played with admirable precision, but their mass and volume often dwarfed the material.

Mr. Joel performed his "New York State of Mind," which took on added poignancy after September 11th, 2001. Here, though, the song morphed into an arena-size ballad, a trait Mr. Joel's work took on throughout much of the evening.

He belted out nearly all the expected numbers, including "The Entertainer," a perfect choice since he proved to be a ham at Thursday's concert. He mugged and struck gangsta-like poses (bad ones, at that). He was at his best when showcasing the early part of his career, a period that produced such gems as "Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)," "Big Shot," and "Only The Good Die Young." However, he abandoned the tried-and-true for more ambitious experimentations with tribal beats and doo-wop throwbacks. On the plus side, his "Everybody Loves You Now" (from 1971) fit nicely alongside the established crowd pleasers and gave the night a rare jolt of unpredictability.

Another pleasant moment came when a tattooed roadie named Chainsaw came out to perform AC/DC's "Highway To Hell" with surprising fidelity. Mr. Joel strummed an acoustic guitar in the background. Afterward, the star performed "We Didn't Start The Fire" - a sad reminder of why some songs should be left in their respective time capsules and never removed.

Mr. Joel was hardly stationary during the night, bouncing back and forth among three pianos while drawing from his extensive catalogue. He's still a force to be reckoned with, and though he has chosen to tour without new material, he's a far cry from the standard oldies act.

"Joel Rubbishes Busty Claims"
(March 24th, 2006)

Singer Billy Joel has rubbished reports that a dancer from his American musical "Movin' Out" was fired because her breasts grew too large. Alice Alyse has launched a $100 million lawsuit claiming she was sacked from the show last month because her breasts became too big for her costume. The "Piano Man" star, whose music is featured in show, has weighed in on the allegations, even though he is not named in the lawsuit. Joel tells the New York Daily News, "Under no circumstances would I ever have fired anyone for having breasts that were too large..."

"'Piano Man''s Daughter Tries Hand at Playing"
By: Sarah Rodman
(March 24th, 2006)

Billy Joel's daughter, Alexa Ray, has decided to enter the family business.

The 20 year-old has put her studies at New York University on hold to embark on a career as a singer-songwriter. Monday, Joel brings her nascent musical offerings and a three-piece band to Great Scott.

Joel - whose name was immortalized in her dad's ballad "The Downeaster 'Alexa'" - has yet to release a recording or sign with a label, but reports from recent shows indicate that the apple may not have fallen too far from the tree.

In a review of a December performance at the Cutting Room in Manhattan - attended by both her dad and mom, Christie Brinkley - a reporter likened her style to "Carole King circa 1970." In a more extensive write-up last week, the Hartford Courant said, "Joel is an unquestionably skilled singer, songwriter, and piano player" and complimented the range of her 12-song set, saying she went from "Mariah Carey highs" to "the bluesy, laid-back Norah Jones thing."

Joel acknowledges the Jones comparison as well as those to Fiona Apple on her page. She describes her sound as "pop/rock soul."

According to her profile, Joel has been writing songs and studying piano since childhood. She credits a summer program at Berklee College of Music with helping her shed inhibitions about performance.

"No Place Like Dome For The 'Piano Man'"
By: Mark Bialczak
(March 24th, 2006)

The title of his 1977 hit album "The Stranger" aside, Billy Joel has made himself a frequent visitor to the Carrier Dome.

When the singer/songwriter "Piano Man" from Long Island plays under the big top at 8:00pm Saturday, it will be his record-breaking seventh performance on the Dome stage.

Joel last played in Syracuse on May 5th, 2001, splitting a bill with fellow superstar Elton John. His last solo show at the Dome was on December 11th, 1998.

To prove that the guy who put 33 singles on Billboard magazine's Top 40 pop charts still has it in Central New York, the 38,500 tickets sold-out the first day they were on sale.

Joel will also be the commencement speaker at Syracuse University on May 14th, 2006. Last September, he donated $320,000 to SU's Setnor School of Music to establish music scholarships and endowments for future composers.

Talk about a "New York State of Mind." Billy Joel In Concert - What You Need To Know:

When: 8:00pm - Saturday at the Carrier Dome. The doors open at 6:30pm. There is no opening act, and the show is expected to last about 2+ hours, with no intermission.

Tickets: All the tickets, priced at $39.50, are sold-out. The configuration at the Dome will seat around 38,500. The Gate B box office at the Dome will open at noon Saturday for the pick-up of pre-purchased tickets. A look on earlier this week showed 20 listings for the Saturday show, with prices ranging $20 for a single upper-level seat to $1,395 for four floor seats in Row F.

Parking: There will be limited public parking at the Stadium and Fine lots on the west side of the Dome. There also will be parking at the University Avenue garage on Adams Street, Main Campus lots on Waverly and Comstock avenues, and at the Manley and Skytop lots. Fees at SU's parking lots will be $10, and free shuttle service is available from Manley and Skytop. Dome officials suggest leaving an hour to get from your car to the Dome.

OnTrack: OnTrack will operate trains from Armory Square to and from the Carrier Dome, starting at 6 p.m. The round-trip fare is $4, with free parking in the Murbro lot through the tunnel next to the train station behind MOST.

Don't Bring: The following items are prohibited: radios, still or video cameras, audio recording devices, food or beverages, backpacks, coolers, packages, noise-making devices or glow sticks. There won't be a place to check items, so concert-goers with these items will have to go back to their cars.

What To Expect Onstage: Glenn Gamboa, of Newsday, wrote: "Most veteran artists rehearse between 30 and 40 songs for a headlining tour. Joel and his band have about 60 songs to choose from each night including everything from monster hits such as 'Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)' to signature songs such as 'Scenes From An Italian Restaurant' to obscurities such as 'Where's The Orchestra?,' a 24 year-old album track that makes its live debut on this tour."

"It's Still Rock and Joel To Me: 'Piano Man' Comes To Syracuse To Celebrate Dome's 25th Anniversary"
By: Alex Shebar
(March 24th, 2006)

One thing every good birthday celebration needs is music, so it's no wonder a concert is planned for the Carrier Dome's 25th anniversary. But the Dome isn't just any building; it's the most recognizable structure in Central New York and arguably one of the more famous athletic structures in the country. Therefore, its birthday celebration is guaranteed to be spectacular with a performance from rock legend Billy Joel.

Joel, or "Piano Man," is bringing his nation-wide "My Lives" Tour to Syracuse tomorrow night for a sold-out performance in the Dome. He will be playing to a crowd of nearly 39,000 people, comprised of Syracuse University, the local community and surrounding cities.

Joel has become a large presence in many aspects of Syracuse University this year. In September, he gave the College of Visual and Performing Arts $320,000 for music fellowships and will be the keynote speaker at the university's commencement ceremony in May 2006.

Joel and his agency, AEG New York, have had a very good relationship with Syracuse University for many years now, said Patrick Campbell, senior associate athletic director.

"This is Billy's year for Syracuse," Campbell said. "We have a pretty good relationship with the agency and Billy, and he wanted to play here. Actually it was Billy's idea, really. He's a friend of Syracuse."

The concert at the Dome is the peak of its year-long birthday celebration. While the actual birthdate of the building is September 20th, 1980, the celebration continued with special occurrences at different sporting events throughout the year, and will culminate with this concert, Campbell said.

The Tour is Joel's first solo tour in seven years. He has played at Syracuse University many times before, most recently performing with Elton John on the "Face 2 Face" Tour in 2001.

Joel's last solo show at Syracuse University was during his World Tour in 1998, when ticket prices were $39.50. He decided to keep the same price to celebrate the Dome's birthday and his first solo show here in a while, Campbell said.

"(Joel) has played here several times, so we were a little unsure of what the response would be, and it's been better than we ever thought it would be," Campbell said. "(It's a) faster sell-out than we have ever had."

The extreme popularity of Joel has a lot to do with his ability to span generations and interest different people from all walks of life, said Cristina Parvu, publicist for AEG.

"The community is often times very separated from the Syracuse University campus…but these types of concerts bring people onto the campus for a fun event," Parvu said. "It's always great to have the two communities mix and enjoy the music and have such a fun time together. It's an all-round good time for everyone."

Parvu is a 2004 political science and international relations major graduate of Syracuse University. She was at the university for Joel's last performance in the Dome and said it was very entertaining. This show should be equally fun for anyone going, Parvu said.

Some people, like Caroline Vajos, a junior biology major, know first-hand about Joel's ability to interest people of all ages. She is attending the show with her boyfriend and her boyfriend's grandmother, both of whom are equally excited about the show.

"He falls in that genre of music that if people gave it a chance they would find it pleasing. For younger people, it's good music to listen to and to older people, it has lyrics they can appreciate," Vajos said. "I think parents would be very excited if they came home and put on Billy Joel instead of rap and the shit that's on the radio."

Others are just excited about going to the show with friends. Derrick Chafin, a freshman advertising major, is going to the concert with 15 other people, and said he knows many people who are doing the same thing.

"I think it's going to be really entertaining. It's completely sold out, so it's going to be a crap-load of people," Chafin said.

It's not just students from Syracuse University interested in the show. With Joel's other shows, the closest in New York City and Philadelphia and more than four hours away from Syracuse, students around the area are coming here for the show.

"I'm a huge Billy Joel fan, and they were really cheap tickets. I've been looking forward to it even since I got (them) in late December, early January," said Marc Cicola, a sophomore history major at Ithaca College. "But on a Saturday, I would travel four or five hours (to see him), as long as I didn't have to travel back that night."

The show has been in planning since around this time last year, Campbell said. The Dome has a school rule that all concerts must occur on the weekend, and that all events have must be scheduled around football and basketball season. This made it difficult to schedule and the concert took a long time to arrange, Campbell said.

Another factor hindering Dome shows is the fact that, when setting up a stage, nothing can be hung from the ceiling due to weight constraints. This means that a cover must be laid on the turf, a specific stage must be rented and constructed with cranes and electronics have to be put into place. The whole process takes about three days and nights and about 150 workers, both students and professionals, said Pete Sala, associate director of athletics for faculty at the Carrier Dome.

"The reason it's so hard to do shows is because a lot of the big bands aren't touring, but for the ones that are, the Carrier Dome is an outside venue," Sala said. "In order to play here, someone has to (pay for everything), when they can go up the road and play at Rich Stadium (in Buffalo, New York) to play for 9,000 people at the same cost. The structuring of how everything is done between the building and the band and the promoter, but (Campbell) has done a hell of a job trying to get bands in here. It's very tough."

Overall, all the promoters of the show are very excited for the show and think it will be a great finale to the celebration of the Dome's birth.

"It's a success already. Any time you sell out, it's a great thing," Campbell said. "The reviews on this Tour have been awesome, and it's going to be a really super show."

"Billy Joel Rocks The Dome"
(March 26th, 2006)

Tickets went on sale months ago and Saturday night fans who have been waiting for weeks finally got to see Billy Joel return to the Carrier Dome. The "Piano Man" played in front of a sold-out crowd more than 38,000 screaming fans. It was Joel's seventh time performing at Syracuse, New York. He was here five years ago to play a show with fellow singer Elton John. Saturday night the singer played a mix of classic favorites, and some unknown tunes, much to the delight of his fans. This won't be the last time Joel is in Syracuse, New York this year the singer will also speak at Syracuse University's Commencement ceremony on May 14th, 2006. Joel has done more then just perform and speak at Syracuse University It was last September when Joel donated 320,000 dollars to the Setnor School of Music to establish a music scholarship program.

"'Piano Man' Spins A Record at Dome"
Crowd of Seasoned Fans, Young People Has Ball at Billy Joel's Seventh Concert

By: Mark Bialczak
(March 26th, 2006)

They sure picked the right guy to host the party to celebrate the Carrier Dome's 25th anniversary.

Billy Joel set the record with his seventh concert on the Dome stage, breaking the mark he'd shared with The Rolling Stones.

The 56 year-old hit maker from Long Island serenaded the capacity crowd with almost 30 songs. They practically wouldn't let him leave, so he sang three encores, "Only The Good Die Young," "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" and, of course, his trademark singalong song for the ages, "Piano Man."

He told jokes, at one point waving at the huge light standards hanging overhead and commenting, "If those came down, they'd wipe out hundreds of people. Enjoy the concert."

Like at any great party, there were surprise guests. The three guys who host the cable TV show "Orange County Chopper" showed up to deliver a gift: a red custom motorcycle named "The Billy Bomb." They started the mean bike up, and Joel shared the mean growl with fans, holding his mic to the exhaust.

It was one fun bash.

Nobody seemed to care one bit that Joel hasn't written a hit song since his "River of Dreams" album came out in 1993.

On Saturday night, the fans were satisfied with sharing the glorious past that Joel spiced up for the world with his 33 hits that made the Billboard Top 40 charts, starting with 1974.

This tour is being billed as "My Lives" after a boxed set of rarities, live cuts, and alternate versions released late last year.

So Joel gave his die-hard fans great pleasure. Anybody who listened to his records start to finish could love the early flash of the fast-paced "Everybody Loves You Now" from his 1971 album "Cold Spring Harbor."

"Yes, before your parents were born," Joel joked with the crowd.

But in reality, the house was weighted toward those old enough to have experienced his music the first time around, with some enthusiastic students who must have grown up listening to their parents' records or the classic rock stations.

The stirring "The Ballad of Billy The Kid" from "Piano Man," started with Joel's vocalizing the western clonk of a horse; the top-notch eight-piece band helped lay down the exotic beats of "Zanzibar."

For the sad and tragic "Goodnight Saigon," a group of crew members stood, hands draped over each others' shoulders, singing the chorus, "And we would all go down together." It was easy to take the leap of imagination that all were war veterans.

The refrain to "Miami 2017 (Seen The Lights Go Out On Broadway)" has taken a scary turn since September 11th, 2001, and the words "We held a concert out in Brooklyn to see the Island bridges blow" carry a new ache. Nevertheless, Joel mostly kept the hits coming and the mood celebratory.

Chatty he was, though, telling fans that the rarity they'd play was called "Summer, Highland Falls" "even though those words never appear in the song." When announcing the rapid-fire timeline "We Didn't Start The Fire," he declared, "This song isn't really about anything, but it did help a lot of history students pass their grade."

The band did its talking with great work, particularly the striking guitar and wondrous percussion of veteran Joel colleagues Tommy Byrnes and Crystal Taliefero, respectively.

The fans said volumes when they cheered at the right moment, like when he changed the lyrics in "New York State of Mind" to "don't care if it's Syracuse or Oceanside" and when Joel took a dance break while never getting off his piano stool during "River of Dreams."

Anybody there to watch the crowd call Joel out for that first encore could tell that he's still something special in 2006. After all, the Dome was ablaze but with far more opened cell phones than cigarette lighters aflame.

"Billy Joel For 2006 Gig at Croke Park"
(March 27th, 2006)

Billy Joel has confirmed a concert date at Dublin's Croke Park on Saturday July 29th, 2006.

This exclusive Irish date is part of Joel's first major solo concert tour in eight years.

His sold-out North American Tour has included a record-breaking 12-show run at New York's Madison Square Garden, playing hits like "Piano Man," "Only The Good Die Young," "We Didn't Start The Fire," and "The River of Dreams."

Tickets, priced from €66.50, go on-sale at 8:00am on Wednesday April 5th, 2006 from TicketMaster outlets nationwide.

"Concert Review: Recharged Joel Sells-Out Carrier Dome"
By: Jeff Spevak
(March 27th, 2006)

It's the same jolt you get when you see the cast of Bonanzathat Pernell Roberts?" after 30 years and ask, "Is that Pernell Roberts?"

No, that was Billy Joel, playing Saturday for a sold-out crowd of almost 40,000 at the Carrier Dome.

In celebration of the Dome's 25th year, Joel went back in time to when he last played the venue, 1998, by charging the same ticket price, $39.50. It was also quite a trip back in time for the singer's voice, a medical marvel rivaling Donald Trump's comb-over. Maybe it's the rehab or the careful selection of chauffeurs. But Joel seems to have recovered some of the vocal abilities that so alarmingly deserted him in the '80s, when he had to resort to bringing another fellow on tour with him to sing the high parts.

His well-known car accidents a thing of the past, on Saturday night Joel needed only an eight-piece band (including two percussionists and three horns) to perform 2½ hours and 25 songs for the middle-agers who were gathered adoringly before him. It was all their faves, from the opening "Prelude/Angry Young Man" to the show-closing, sing-along ballad with simply Joel, his piano and his harmonica on "Piano Man."

He proceeded somewhat chronologically through his catalogue, especially early on with 1971's "Everybody Loves You Now" and lines such as "you only speak to those who might agree." He's had a cynical slant ever since, describing the loser of "Captain Jack," who's "21 and still your mother makes your bed," and the soldier protagonists of "Goodnight Saigon" who "left in plastic numbered as corpses."

There was a 26th song, but it wasn't Joel's. A member of his road crew, introduced simply as "Chainsaw," did a credible job with the vocals on AC/DC's "Highway To Hell."

That followed an unexpected celebrity moment during "We Didn't Start The Fire," when burly Paul Teutul of the Discovery Channel's American Chopper appeared on the stage astride a custom-built, old-school bike that he and the rest of the feuding Teutul clan - Paul Jr. and Mikey - presented to Joel at the end of the song.

The recharged Joel probably can handle the chopper without a chauffeur these days, even if he is 56. But a trip back in time doesn't erase all excesses. During "I Go To Extremes," the stocky Joel kicked his piano stool away, turned his back on the piano and slammed the keyboard with his butt, producing a mortar round of chords.

And if he was going to alter "New York State of Mind" by inserting "Syracuse" into the lyrics, he should have also changed "The Entertainer" and that line about being "another long-haired musician."

"Billy Joel Reveals Long-Awaited UK & Eire Tour"
Five Arena Dates Initially Confirmed

(March 27th, 2006)

Billy Joel is to tour the UK and Ireland for the first time in 12 years, Sound Generator can reveal.

The Grammy Award-winner, currently in the middle of a massive world tour (which broke records after the star sold-out New York's Madison Square Garden for 12 consecutive nights, will touch down in early July for the arena shows, which begin Wednesday, July 5th, 2006 at the Birmingham NEC.

"Billy Joel Sets Up July Date For Concert at Croke Park"
By: Maureen Coleman
(March 27th, 2006)

Music legend Billy Joel has confirmed an exclusive Irish date in Dublin, Ireland this summer, it was revealed today.

The singer will perform at Croke Park on Saturday, July 29th, 2006, as part of his first major solo concert tour in eight years.

Tickets, priced from 66.50 euro, go on sale on Wednesday, April 5th, 2006, at 8:00am from Ticketmaster outlets.

The singer/songwriter has been wowing audiences on his sold-out North American tour with performances of his pop anthems including "Uptown Girl," "Only The Good Die Young," "Piano Man," "We Didn't Start The Fire," and "The River of Dreams."

To date on this tour he has performed 22 concerts in front of nearly 400,000, including an historic 12 show run at Madison Square Garden, New York.

Since he began performing Billy Joel has recorded 16 albums, notching up sales of over 100 million and has won five Grammy Awards as well as an induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Coinciding with his upcoming solo concert tour, Columbia Records/Legacy Recordings has released "My Lives," a lavish five-disc boxed set chronicling his extraordinary musical evolution from early '60s Long Island bar bands to his more recent classical compositions.

One of Joel's biggest hits was "Uptown Girl," which he wrote for his then wife, top model Chrisie Blinkley.

The song has since been covered by Westlife.

"'The Entertainer': Billy Joel's Low-Key Performance Hits All The Right Notes"
By: Alex Shebar
(March 27th, 2006)

The lights went down after a two-hour set of rock and roll classics, and 39,000 people stood in their seats waiting for an encore from a living rock legend. Thousands of lights from cell phones and lighters began to flicker on, giving an eerie blue and gold aquarium feeling to the Carrier Dome. The rocker finally returned and, after playing two of his hit songs, finished with the one tune everyone was waiting for, "Piano Man." And in the midst of what could possibly be the largest sing-along in the history of Syracuse University, the rocker smiled and sang these lyrics to the applause of the crowd:

"It's a pretty good crowd for a Saturday / And the manager gives me a smile / 'Cause he knows that it's me they've been coming to see / To forget about life for a while."

And that's exactly how it felt when Billy Joel played at Syracuse University.

Joel played a two and a half hour set Saturday night to a filled Dome, breaking the record for the amount of people he had previously held with The Rolling Stones. While starting 25 minutes late and encountering some sound problems, Joel quickly won over the crowd with songs emphasizing his amazing talents on the piano and lyrics perfect for a hall filled with Syracuse University Students.

Without any words to the audience, Joel began the night with "Prelude/Angry Young Man" and segued right into "My Life," both songs about dealing with being young in society. It was the perfect start to what would be a nonstop rock spectacle filled with stage antics, stories from the road and surprise guests.

Joel's performance was a culmination of a yearlong celebration of the 25th birthday of the Dome. Joel, currently on the "My Lives" Tour, his first solo tour in seven years, has played a large role at Syracuse University this year. Beyond the performance, he gave the College of Visual and Performing Arts $320,000 for music fellowships in September 2005 and will be the keynote speaker at the university's commencement ceremony in May 2006.

And like any good party, there were a few surprises. About halfway through the show, people started arranging things to the side of the stage. Even Billy commented on it by exclaiming, "Some strange people are walking around on the stage. Some kind of weird shit is going on here." And so it was, when the hosts of the Discovery Channel show "Orange County Choppers" showed up on stage to present Joel with "The Billy Bike," their latest cycle creation.

"The Orange County Choppers was great, it was so awesome they were there," said Camille Allen, a resident of Albany, New York, whose friends bought her tickets for Christmas. "It was all awesome. (Billy) played every song I wanted to hear. He looked like he was having a really good time."

Joel knew the crowd he was playing to, and worked it. He gave a slight pause to let the crowd cheer after singing about smoking pot and masturbation in "Captain Jack," inserted Syracuse into "New York State of Mind" and, in "It's Still Rock and Roll To Me," after singing, "Should I try to be a straight-A student?" let the audience respond with, "If you are then you think too much."

The most amazing thing about Joel is how he needs so little to entertain. In an era where concerts have become a sort of theater with special effects, choreographed dances and bright flashing images set up on screens behind the performer, Joel has been doing the same routine show for more than 30 years, but it works. Using a minimal amount of lights and a little bit of fog, the focus remained almost entirely on the performer.

Joel is a natural-born performer, and used playful antics to entertain. Whether it was spinning a microphone stand like a ninja staff for "It's Still Rock and Roll To Me," straddling and spanking a piano stool while performing "You May Be Right" or playing air guitar to "The Entertainer" (and real guitar for "A Matter of Trust"), Joel never stopped trying to keep the audience enthralled.

"It was funny just to see Billy Joel up there acting like an idiot. It was a really good time, a really great show," said Jim Reep, a resident of Syracuse, New York.

Joel, having long ago perfected show banter, would often make small talk to the audience, including making fun of himself and the different embarrassing things he has done.

"You in the back there," Joel said to the people in the last rows and bleachers of the Dome. "I want to thank you for buying the shitty seats. I appreciate it. I need the money now. I got some amazing car insurance."

He would also often introduce his songs with what album and year they were from, along with any stories or comments that seemed to even amuse himself.

"This song isn't about anything in particular, but it did help a lot of history students pass," he told the audience before breaking into "We Didn't Start The Fire."

"It was unbelievable; Billy was on top of his game," said Henry Haber, a freshman accounting major. "He really played to the audience, and he really enjoyed himself and all of Syracuse, New York appreciates it."

Joel did have some help with his performance. He had a back-up band of eight skilled musicians, many who played multiple instruments. Joel seemed to include as many different sounds into his pieces as he could, including accordions, electric pianos, two drum sets and multiple percussion, brass and woodwind instruments.

And while unable to still hit some of the higher notes, Joel's voice has remained strong, and he sounds as good as he did long before most of the crowd was born. What has remained amazing, if not advanced, is Joel's talent on the piano. Throughout the show, he performed numerous solos, displaying his amazing talent on the instrument. There was even a specific camera set up to display his hands, which was appreciated since it was entertaining to see them move across the keys.

"It was phenomenal, absolutely phenomenal. It's Billy Joel - what else do you have to say?" said Josh Davis, a junior finance major.

When the show finally ended, people shuffled out of the Dome into the warm night, with smiles on their faces and literally, songs in their heart.

"Ain't it wonderful to be alive when the rock and roll plays?" Joel sang to the crowd in "Keeping The Faith."

Yes, it certainly is.

"'Piano Man' Back In The UK"
(March 28th, 2006)

Billy Joel is to play in the UK for the first time since 1994.

The "Piano Man" singer will play four dates this summer as part of his world tour.

A six-times Grammy winner, Joel has sold more than 100 million records, with other hits including "An Innocent Man," "Uptown Girl," and "Tell Her About It."

He is currently in the middle of a record-breaking run at New York's Madison Square Garden - selling out 12 nights.

The previous record of 10 nights was held by Bruce Springsteen.

He will play Birmingham, London, Manchester, and Glasgow, ending with a gig in Dublin.

"Billy Joel Credits 'Movin' Out' For Helping Recovery"
(March 29th, 2006)

Singer/songwriter Billy Joel credits his work on the Broadway musical "Movin' Out" with helping him recover from alcohol addiction last year. The "Uptown Girl" hitmaker, who spent time in the Betty Ford Centre in California to conquer his habit, was also dealing with the stress of taking legal action against his former manager and ex-brother-in-law Frank Weber over accounting irregularities. Joel is bemused by the media hype surrounding his treatment, insisting addiction is inevitable for most musicians. He says, "I don't know why there was so much fuss about me going into rehab, I was like, 'Well, doesn't everybody?' "The lawsuit was a pain in the ass, that's true, but I've done really well for myself so nobody needs to worry about me. "But it's amazing how nobody in the music industry gets away clean. "It's like prizefighting - you get a shot at the title, but ultimately you always get your ass kicked and then you turn around and all the money's gone."

"Billy Joel's Back On The Road After Longest Time"
By: Sarah Mauet
(March 20th, 2006)

Billy Joel's first major solo concert tour in nearly seven years had a record-breaking start in January 2006. The rock and roll star played 10 sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden in a single run, which tied Bruce Springsteen's pervious 10-show record.

Joel is back on the road to support the November 2005 release of "My Lives." The four-CD/one-DVD boxed set of demos, rarities, soundtrack contributions, and hit songs paints a musical portrait of Joel as a songwriter and a musician as well as a star. The box set shows the evolution of the artist whose hits "Piano Man," "We Didn't Start The Fire," "Uptown Girl," "The Longest Time," "Just The Way You Are," and countless others turned him into a five-time Grammy-winning rock legend with 100 million records sold.
Joel takes the stage again at 8:00pm Monday night at the US Airways Center (formerly America West Arena).

"Billy Joel Is 'Movin' Out'"
By: Lacey Rose
(March 31st, 2006)

The "Piano Man" recently fetched $4.25 million for his 2,681-square-foot TriBeCa pad, reports The New York Observer.

Musician Billy Joel’s apartment was located at the Hubert, a swanky condominium located between Hudson and Greenwich streets. The condo includes three bedrooms and three and a half bathrooms.

Joel had shelled out $3.9 million for the condo in 2004. While his tenure there was short-lived - Joel moved into a three-story townhouse on Perry Street in July 2005 - the Hubert spread wasn't quick to sell. He first listed the condo at $5 million last summer.

Joel, 56, commenced his first major solo concert tour in nearly seven years in January of this year. The pop music icon has had 33 Top 40 hits and 23 Grammy nominations since signing his first solo recording contract in 1971.

"Lansing Man Meets The 'Piano Man'"
Nurse Arranges Backstage Visit at Syracuse Show

By: Linda Stout
(March 31st, 2006)

Salmon Creek Road resident Brent Larsen, 28, has been a huge Billy Joel fan since he was in junior high, so Jean Dennis decided to orchestrate a meeting.

It took a couple of phone calls, first to the Carrier Dome in Syracuse where Joel played March 25th, 2006, then to several of Joel's "people." But Dennis pulled it off, creating a Saturday night to remember.

"He was absolutely flabbergasted," said Marcia Larsen, Brent's mom.

It was a complete surprise for her, Brent and Brent's father, Wayne Larsen. Their evening included several hours backstage before the concert, a catered VIP dinner, a private meeting with Billy Joel - and the concert.

'It was loud and exciting," said Marcia, who preferred to speak for her son for several reasons, one because she wanted to surprise him again, and because he is on a ventilator and speaking is difficult.

Brent was born with Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy and has been on a ventilator since 1998.

Dennis, a Dryden resident, not only organized it, but went along to the concert, too, as Brent's nurse.

"He needs constant care,' his mom said.

Brent is a fan of Elton John, too, and the last time he saw Billy Joel live, it was combined concert with the two stars.

But he'd never expected a face-to-face meeting with the "Piano Man," who also played guitar during his Syracuse concert of 33 songs that lasted nearly three hours, according to his mom.

Backstage before the show, "We talked about his songs," Marcia said, noting Brent is particularly fond of "Piano Man" and "We Didn't Start The Fire." She said Billy told them he hoped they liked the show, and his support staff re-arranged seating for Brent to get a front-row seat that would accommodate his need for electricity to power his ventilator.

Brent graduated from Lansing High School, and despite very serious medical problems in 1998, he got out of the hospital in time to graduate with a business degree from Tompkins Cortland Community College. He was really sick, could barely speak, but told his parents to keep the batteries charged on his wheelchair because he was determined to finish college.

Brent is passionate not just to listening to music, but he and his father, an accordion player, follow NASCAR. Brent also digs late-night comedy on television.

He has been a public persona himself, serving as the New York State Muscular Dystrophy poster child in 1991 and goodwill ambassador in 1990.

Brent's sister, Brianne, 24, is also a Lansing High School graduate. She plans to enter medical school in August, nudged by her relationship with her big brother.

"He was her inspiration to go into medicine. She saw how much difference good doctors made to Brent's life," said Marcia, who works as a fitness instructor.

Brent and his parents - his dad works as a roofing supervisor for Evans Roofing in Elmira and Ithaca - are thrilled that Dennis, a Stafkings nurse, saw beyond her medical duties.

"She knows how much he loves Billy Joel, so she decided to take a chance to see if he could meet."

"It was her brainstorm. Brent's life everyday is such a challenge, so she wanted to do something nice for him - and mom and dad - to give him something he would always remember," said Marcia, who said she was told Brent could be expected to live to be 18 or 20.

He's about to turn 29, and was dancing in his wheelchair on the deck in the sun Wednesday his mom said, rocking out to - who else? - Billy Joel.

"Billy Joel Amazed By Elton John's Energy"
(March 31st, 2006)

Veteran singer Billy Joel is amazed by the amount of energy his friend and touring partner Sir Elton John puts into performing and recording, because the "Uptown Girl" star is happy to live off past glories. Joel toured with the "Candle In The Wind" hitmaker for a decade on-and-off - and has compared his stage partner to Eveready's Energizer Bunny mascot, because he is always on the move. Joel says, "He's constantly working, he's like the Energizer Bunny. He gives me a hard time, asking me why I don't put out more albums. We've sold-out all these Madison Square Garden shows, and everybody's going, 'But he hasn't put out a new album in so long!' My take on it is, 'Gee, I should put out less albums more often!'"