History Music / BillyJoel

15th Aug '16 11:50:11 AM LadyJaneGrey
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* RealLifeWritesThePlot:
** "Piano Man" is very biographic. He was supporting himself by playing in a piano bar while waiting out a bad record deal and thought no one would believe his story, so he wrote a song about it. Everyone in the song is based on a real person.
** ''An Innocent Man'', an upbeat and nostalgic album reflected Billy's bachelorhood and newfound romances with Christie Brinkley and Creator/ElleMacPherson. ''River Of Dreams'' reflected Billy and Christie's marital woes and eventual divorce, along with Billy's legal issues (his ex-brother-in-law, who managed Billy's finances, was found to have cheated him for millions of dollars).
15th Aug '16 8:49:34 AM LadyJaneGrey
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* BerserkButton: Infamously, "''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqY6mXULzpw STOP LIGHTING THE AUDIENCE!]]''" For context, this was during a show that he was playing behind the Iron Curtain in the former Soviet Union. During the show, the Secret Police used the lighting to pick out rowdy audience members, essentially making them afraid to show any hint of having fun. Quoth Billy later of the incident, "I didn't throw a tantrum, I threw a piano."

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* BerserkButton: BerserkButton:
**
Infamously, "''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqY6mXULzpw STOP LIGHTING THE AUDIENCE!]]''" For context, this was during a show that he was playing behind the Iron Curtain in the former Soviet Union. During the show, the Secret Police used the lighting to pick out rowdy audience members, essentially making them afraid to show any hint of having fun. Quoth Billy later of the incident, "I didn't throw a tantrum, I threw a piano."



* TheCameo: RodneyDangerfield appears in the "Tell Her About It" video.

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* TheCameo: TheCameo:
**
RodneyDangerfield appears in the "Tell Her About It" video.



* DarkerAndEdgier: Both ''Glass Houses'' and especially ''The Nylon Curtain'' are this compared to Joel's other albums.
** ''Storm Front'' and especially ''River Of Dreams'' are compared to ''An Innocent Man'' and ''The Bridge''. It didn't help that [[CreatorBreakdown Joel's financial issues and eventual divorce from Christie Brinkley]] happened during this time period, and it's reflected in many of the songs from this time.
* ADateWithRosiePalms: One popular interpretation of "Captain Jack," though it's explicitly about being TheStoner. Being bored and masturbating is mentioned in the song, though.

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* DarkerAndEdgier: Both ''Glass Houses'' and especially ''The Nylon Curtain'' are this compared to Joel's other albums.
**
albums. ''Storm Front'' and especially ''River Of Dreams'' are this compared to ''An Innocent Man'' and ''The Bridge''. It didn't help that [[CreatorBreakdown Joel's financial issues and eventual divorce from Christie Brinkley]] happened during this time period, and it's reflected in many of the songs from this time.
* ADateWithRosiePalms: ADateWithRosiePalms:
**
One popular interpretation of "Captain Jack," though it's explicitly about being TheStoner. Being bored and masturbating is mentioned in the song, though.



* {{Documentary}}: ''Last Play at Shea'', which used his July 16th and 18th, 2008 concerts at [[UsefulNotes/MLBTeams the New York Mets' Shea Stadium]], the last ones ever performed there before the building was demolished, as a launchpad for covering his career, the history of American suburbia on Long Island and of the Mets.

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* {{Documentary}}: {{Documentary}}:
**
''Last Play at Shea'', which used his July 16th and 18th, 2008 concerts at [[UsefulNotes/MLBTeams the New York Mets' Shea Stadium]], the last ones ever performed there before the building was demolished, as a launchpad for covering his career, the history of American suburbia on Long Island and of the Mets.



* EchoingAcoustics: "Miami 2017 (Seen the Light Go Out on Broadway)" has a weird reverb effect added to it.

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* EchoingAcoustics: EchoingAcoustics:
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"Miami 2017 (Seen the Light Go Out on Broadway)" has a weird reverb effect added to it.



* TheEveryman: According to Joel, "Anthony's Song" (or "Movin' Out) is not about someone named Anthony; the name is supposed to represent "every Irish, Polish, and Italian kid trying to make a living in the U.S."



* {{Genre Bust|ing}}er: If you had to classify it, you'd probably call it "piano-based rock and roll," but Joel's music has an extremely wide range of styles.

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* {{Genre Bust|ing}}er: Bust|ing}}er:
**
If you had to classify it, you'd probably call it "piano-based rock and roll," but Joel's music has an extremely wide range of styles.



* RealLifeWritesThePlot of "Piano Man". He was supporting himself by playing in a piano bar while waiting out a bad record deal and thought no one would believe his story, so he wrote a song about it. Everyone in the song is based on a real person.

to:

* RealLifeWritesThePlot of RealLifeWritesThePlot:
**
"Piano Man".Man" is very biographic. He was supporting himself by playing in a piano bar while waiting out a bad record deal and thought no one would believe his story, so he wrote a song about it. Everyone in the song is based on a real person.



* RefrainFromAssuming: It's "River of Dreams" not "In The Middle Of The Night".

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* RefrainFromAssuming: RefrainFromAssuming:
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It's "River of Dreams" not "In The Middle Of The Night".Night".
** "Antony's Song", not "Movin' Out".



* TakeThatCritics: Early in his career, Billy had a habit of tearing up newspapers that had given him bad reviews during his live concerts.

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* TakeThatCritics: TakeThatCritics:
**
Early in his career, Billy had a habit of tearing up newspapers that had given him bad reviews during his live concerts.
28th Jul '16 6:15:10 PM epicparadox
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Added DiffLines:

** There are also ''The Bridge to Russia'' and ''A Matter of Trust'', both TV documentaries about his historic tour in the USSR, released decades apart.
10th Jul '16 5:29:29 PM CallingAlameda
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* {{Manipulative B|astard}}itch: "Laura" (with a healthy dollop of PassiveAggressiveKombat) and "All Just a Woman". "Stilleto" is the rare case in which the protagonist knows she's one, but enjoys it. WordOfGod said it was about any female performer who has the audience in their hands.

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* {{Manipulative B|astard}}itch: "Laura" (with a healthy dollop of PassiveAggressiveKombat) and "All Just "She's Always a Woman". "Stilleto" "Stiletto" is the rare case in which the protagonist knows she's one, but enjoys it. WordOfGod said it was about any female performer who has the audience in their hands.
10th Jul '16 4:42:02 PM AnotherGuy
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Added DiffLines:

* YouAreBetterThanYouThinkYouAre: "You're Only Human (Second Wind)" is possibly the musical TropeCodifier.
10th Jul '16 4:39:11 PM AnotherGuy
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* TakeThat: Before he played a concert in St. Louis on the Stranger tour, Billy received a death threat from a Catholic group regarding the content of the song "Only The Good Die Young." He responded by playing it five times that night.

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* TakeThat: TakeThat:
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Before he played a concert in St. Louis on the Stranger tour, Billy received a death threat from a Catholic group regarding the content of the song "Only The Good Die Young." He responded by playing it five times that night.


Added DiffLines:

** "Big Shot", but Joel refuses to say just ''who'' the song is about. There are popular theories, however.
10th Jul '16 4:37:57 PM AnotherGuy
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* {{Manipulative B|astard}}itch: "Laura" (with a healthy dollop of PassiveAggressiveKombat) and "All Just a Woman". "Stilleto" is the rare case in which the protagonist knows she's one, but enjoys it.

to:

* {{Manipulative B|astard}}itch: "Laura" (with a healthy dollop of PassiveAggressiveKombat) and "All Just a Woman". "Stilleto" is the rare case in which the protagonist knows she's one, but enjoys it. WordOfGod said it was about any female performer who has the audience in their hands.
10th Jul '16 4:33:42 PM AnotherGuy
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Added DiffLines:

** The very album title "Glass Houses" is a Take That, Critics! title. Note Billy is ready to hurl that first stone at the glass house.
10th Jul '16 4:30:32 PM AnotherGuy
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Added DiffLines:

** {{Lampshaded}} in "The Entertainer" when he complains "It was a beautiful song / But it ran too long / So they cut it down to 3:05".
10th Jul '16 4:25:39 PM AnotherGuy
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** In a sense, his irritation with having been compared with fellow piano-based singer-songwriter (and future touring partner) Music/EltonJohn in TheSeventies may also count, as he felt he had his own sound and style, and record executives tried to push him towards an Elton-like sound early in his career. Early, unsuccessful attempts to record ''Turnstiles'' saw Columbia Records set him up to record with Elton's "classic" band (Davey Johnstone, Dee Murray, and Nigel Olsson).

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** In a sense, his irritation with having been compared with fellow piano-based singer-songwriter (and future touring partner) Music/EltonJohn in TheSeventies may also count, as he felt he had his own sound and style, and record executives tried to push him towards an Elton-like sound early in his career. Early, unsuccessful attempts to record ''Turnstiles'' saw Columbia Records set him up to record with Elton's "classic" band (Davey Johnstone, Dee Murray, and Nigel Olsson). [[{{Irony}} Then he did a concert with Elton in Yankee Stadium in 1989.]]
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Music.BillyJoel