Piano Man

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Embittered by legal disputes with his label and an endless tour to support a debut that was dead in the water, Billy Joel hunkered down in his adopted hometown of Los Angeles, spending six months as a lounge singer at a club. He didn't abandon his dreams -- he continued to write songs, including "Piano Man," a fictionalized account of his weeks as a lounge singer. Through a combination of touring and constant hustling, he landed a contract with Columbia and recorded his second album in 1973. Clearly inspired by Elton John's Tumbleweed Connection, not only musically but lyrically, as well as James Taylor, Joel expands the vision and sound of Cold Spring Harbor, ...
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AUDIO CD New 074646938126 NEW/SEALED & Perfect 4 Gift Giving-ADD TO CART ~~~ and Make Someone's Day a Special One: -)

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Embittered by legal disputes with his label and an endless tour to support a debut that was dead in the water, Billy Joel hunkered down in his adopted hometown of Los Angeles, spending six months as a lounge singer at a club. He didn't abandon his dreams -- he continued to write songs, including "Piano Man," a fictionalized account of his weeks as a lounge singer. Through a combination of touring and constant hustling, he landed a contract with Columbia and recorded his second album in 1973. Clearly inspired by Elton John's Tumbleweed Connection, not only musically but lyrically, as well as James Taylor, Joel expands the vision and sound of Cold Spring Harbor, abandoning introspective numbers apart from "You're My Home," a love letter to his wife for character sketches and epics. Even the title track, a breakthrough hit based on his weeks as a saloon singer, focuses on the colorful patrons, not the singer. If his narratives are occasionally awkward or incomplete, he compensates with music that gives the songs a sweeping sense of purpose -- they feel complete, thanks to his indelible melodies and savvy stylistic repurposing. He may have borrowed his basic blueprint from Tumbleweed Connection, particularly with its Western imagery and bluesy gospel flourishes, but he makes it his own, largely due to his melodic flair, which is in greater evidence than on Cold Spring Harbor. Piano Man is where he suggests his potential as a musical craftsman. He may have weaknesses as a lyricist -- such mishaps as the "instant pleasuredome" line in "You're My Home" illustrate that he doesn't have an ear for words -- but Piano Man makes it clear that his skills as a melodicist can dazzle.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/20/1998
  • Label: Sony
  • UPC: 074646938126
  • Catalog Number: 69381

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Billy Joel Primary Artist, Harmonica, Keyboards, Vocals
Larry Carlton Guitar
Eric Weissberg Banjo
Billy Armstrong Violin
Richard Bennett Guitar
Rhys Clark Drums
Laura Creamer Vocals, Background Vocals
Mark Creamer Vocals, Background Vocals
Wilton Felder Bass, Keyboards
Emory Gordy Bass
Fred Heilbrun Banjo
Michael Omartian Accordion
Dean Parks Guitar
Susan Steward Vocals
Ron Tutt Drums
Susan Stewart Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Billy Joel Producer
Ted Jensen Remastering
Ron Malo Engineer
Michael Omartian Arranger
Michael Stewart Producer, Audio Production
John Naatjes Tape Research
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