Monday, March 29, 2010

Billy's Got a Way

As I've revealed in an earlier post, my favorite song of all time is Billy Joel's "She's Got a Way."  I think that it's simple, lovely purity is tremendous. From the very moment I first heard Billy perform it on Saturday Night Live, when I was sitting in my freshman dorm room at Syracuse University, it's been my absolute favorite.

Although I am an enormous fan of  Frank Sinatra and the big bands of the 40's, I confess I am a sucker for all "man behind the piano" tunes from any era.  A guy can be a geeky, nerdy mess, but the moment he sits at a baby grand and plays a sentimental ballad, I am immediately "swooned." When Billy Joel performs, my knees become weak.  I completely understand why gorgeous models have pursued him.

Truth be told, I think Billy's greatest talent lies not in his amazing piano playing or musical abilities, but rather in his lyric writing.  He can describe a situation or a person in just a few words, and make you understand exactly the emotion he is feeling in one simple verse.  Consider this lyric from Piano Man: "Paul is a real estate novelist, who never had time for a wife."  In just thirteen words, you now know EVERYTHING about Paul, don't you?  I think it's just brilliant.

So, it is with great admiration that I present to you my favorite song of all time.  I can't imagine being the girl for which he wrote this, nor what she must have felt the first time he played it for her.  I love it because he never wrote a huge instrumental accompaniment for it, just him and the piano.  It clearly doesn't need anything more.

I hope you enjoy it.  Happy Monday!!

52 comments:

Corinne said...

Love this song too. I saw Billy Joel about 20 years ago and it was without a doubt one of the best concerts I've been to.

Shana said...

I love this song!!

Being Me said...

Oh, hear hear! Another HUGE Billy Joel (oops was going to abbreviate to his first and last initials, but decided against it for obvious reasons.... aherm) here. That song is one of my favourites and I can often be found playing his music up loud :)

PinkPatentMaryJanes said...

Awwww, fabulous! Thanks for the memories x

Lisalulu said...

hey, I'm from San Francisco and I love that New Yorker! mmmmm

Star Child said...

A nice song. I liked that song he sang, something like "In the middle of the night, I go walking in my sleep..."

Think he did "Uptown Girl" too, which is cool.

Thanks hun xx

Eva Gallant said...

I agree: Billy Joel is fabulous!

Kellyansapansa said...

Piano Man is in my top ten all time favourite songs and it's my favourite karaoke pick!

Feeling Just Right said...

I almost clapped at the end with the audience! I've never heard that before. It is such a marvel that he played and sang on his own- i would never have realized.

Now that you say it, i'm thinking of the girl he must have sung it to ;)

blueviolet said...

I've always been a fan of Billy Joel as well! What a nice Monday treat to see this post.

Quixotic said...

I love Billy too, especially this song. Knowing this, my husband arrange for this song to be the one played that bought me back to him after we had done our "first dance" and I had been passed around to all the family. I had managed not to cry all day, but this bought me undone.. in a very good way of course!

BigSis said...

Love, love, love me some Billy Joel. I have lots of great memories to go along with so many of his songs. Great choice for a Monday post!

redwray said...

"Piano Man" is one of my favorites. A lot of thoughts provoked by the lyrics. I like your favorite also.
Thank you for sharing it today.

eventer79 said...

While not a huge Billy Joel fan, I feel the same way about men and pianos -- when they sit down and play well, I confess to some internal swooning!

Evonne said...

I absolutely LOVE Billy Joel and this is definitely my favorite song of his, too! I grew up listening to him, which is a funny story in itself. Thanks for sharing the song!

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

I've seen Billy perform in the late 70's, 80's and 90's and I would go to see him again. He really is a great show! Thanks for the office music. :-)

Richard @ The Bewildered Brit said...

I think I clearly need to learn how to play piano. And sing. :D

Loving Wife, Working Mom said...

I am not a big Billy fan (please don't hate me!) but this is a song I don't mind hearing. :) Plus, I do love Frank, so that must get me some brownie points.

Just Me said...

I have some bloggy love for you over on my blog!

lifeshighway said...

I saw Billy Joel in concert years ago, and he is very swoon-able in person. Thank you for reminding me of this singer/song writer. He had fallen off my radar.

Piano Man was my Dad's favorite song.

Ace said...

Piano Man is my all time favorite song EVER!

Lynn Irwin Stewart said...

My then-boyfriend (now husband) saw him in concert some 30 (yikes) years ago. He was an incredible performer and is one of the best songwriters of all time.

Kat said...

One of my all time favorites :) I absolutely adore Billy Joel.

Juliana said...

That is one of my all time favorites songs ever. I LOVE Billy Joel so very much!

Bossy Betty said...

I was a big Billy Joel fan in college. I am going to dig some of his songs out and listen to them again! Thanks for the reminder of how good he is.

Jenny said...

I think you should send him a link to your blog!

SonyaAnn said...

Thank you for sharing! I have to say that I'm a sucker for 80's music but I have learned that it is not cool to blast it. Well, that is what I've been told by my teenagers.

We live in a Zoo! said...

Yeah, I like that song too. I like Billy Joel. i

Icy BC said...

I grow up listening to Billy Joel's songs, and I agree about him being a talented artist.

Shan said...

Ahh, I *love* this song. I remember hearing it when I was a little girl and just knowing that was the kind of woman I was going to be (eh... you'd have to ask Tom if I'm right or not).

Heatherlyn said...

I've always liked his music. I think he's a true artist.

magically ordinary said...

What a great Monday post! I love that song and Billy Joel, too! I went to a concert of his eons ago (I was pregnant with my 12yr old!). It was fantastic!

lori said...

That really is a beautiful song. I like Billy too. My hubby sings a Billy Joel song to me all the time. He sings "uptown girl" but he changes the words to "goosechase girl". Something about me sending him in the wrong direction for things, but I think he's exaggerating. Anyhoo, yes, Billy is a great songwriter! Piano man is a favorite.

Kristin said...

This song always does it for me. Love it!

Helene said...

I share your love of all things Billy Joel! He's a classic artist whose music will always be popular for the very reasons you described.

She's Got a Way is one of my favorite Billy Joel songs...a good friend of mine's husband sang it to her at their wedding.

Melissa @ Cellulite Investigation said...

You're right, that is a great line. I never realized it before!

Cheryl Moore said...

How sweet the sound! What a woman would give to have a man dedicate this song (or sing it) to her. Thanks for sharing. :)

Rianna said...

You are so right about that line. I never realised that before, but its so cool. xo

Kristi Maloney said...

Woohoo! I am a big BJ fan (ah make that Billy Joel fan!) I also love Scenes from an Italian Restaurant. Great story, lyrics and song. Thanks for posting.

Elle said...

Loooooooooove Billy Joel, and this is one of my most favorite songs from his catalog. Thanks for putting a smile on my face this afternoon! I agree with you that he has a way with lyrics.

Alyssa said...

I LOVE Billy Joel. As a matter of fact he was the second concert I ever saw. Thanks for the great memories!

Holly said...

I will be singing Piano Man all night - one of my faves. I do like Billy Joel. Of course I liked Uptown Girl...I wanted to be Christie.

cfoxes said...

Another great thing about Billy is that more thank two generations can find commonality with his music. You are right. His lyrics is his greatest talent.

Eternally Distracted said...

Fabbarooney songarooney :0)

B Sparkly said...

Thank you for opening my eyes or should I say ears… to this fabulous song:)
Have a great day!
Anat

iheartbowheads.blogspot.com said...

Love it!!!!!

:)

Holly

Kathleen said...

This song has always been a favorite of mine!

JenJen said...

Thanks for the song :) I hate to say it....I'd never heard it before. Seriously. But I liked it, very much :) Thanks for the mini-music lesson!

Ally said...

I'm from Long Island and Billy is like a staple to anyone from LI. He's like Jovi in Jersey -- which is where I live now. Ha ha.

Tales Of A Fourth Grade Nothing

Darlene said...

I love that song too! We saw Billy Joel a long, long time ago in concert. He was married to Christie Brinkley and their daughter was probably about 2. You could see Christie watching the show (from a pit/type area) and their daughter had on earplugs and was sound asleep on top of one of the big speakers (by mom). Sooooo, not only was the show wonderful but we got to see his family (at that time) too.♥

Erin said...

I love this song as well! I did a lyrical dance piece to it in high school and have always thought the lyrics are so simple and brilliant. Ahhhhhh . . . swoon : )

Working Mommy said...

I do really like this song...my first tape was actually a Billy Joel tape that my cousins got me...I can't remember how old I was at the time. Good memories :)

WM

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