billy joel movin’ up

Billy Joel
A musical based on Billy Joel‘s songs is on Broadway and as part of the publicity for the show, Katie Couric interviewed Joel. The interview reveals a glimpse of what he’s like as a normal person. I often wonder what people are really like, as opposed to what you see in movies or events where they’re trying to look good for the camera. I’d like to know who they are when they kick back with friends, shooting the breeze. For instance, I learned that when Joel is hungry during a performance he’ll think about what he could eat after the show.

And sometimes during a song like “Just the Way You Are,” my mind will wander. And I’ll think, ‘I wonder what’s on the room service menu in the hotel.’ ‘Don’t go changing to try and please me. Never let me down before.’ (Maybe a, I don’t know, a burger?) ‘Don’t imagine you’re too familiar.’ (No, it’ll be cold and congealed by the time it gets to the room.) ‘If I don’t see you anymore.’ (And the fries will be flat and dried out.) ‘Could not leave you in times of trouble.'”

That’s the type of stuff I love to learn about celebrities, the little details that make us who we are. He sounds like a down-to-earth guy, especially after hearing what his plans are now.

I’ve had ‘The Career.’ What I would like for the next ten years is to have ‘The Life.’ Because I’ve had an amazing career. It’s been wonderful, fantastic, beyond my wildest expectations. Now I want the life, a life. A relationship with someone, a family, a home. You know, all those normal things that are not part and parcel of being a rock star or celebrity or show biz or any of that stuff. It’s time for me to start living my life at this late date.

Another tidbit I learned from the article is that Billy Joel is the number three best-selling solo artist of all time, behind Garth Brooks and Elvis. Who would’a thunk?


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  1. I saw that bit where his mind wanders during a song. I thought that was great because I’ve always wondered what they think when they’re up there singing the same song time after time, year after year. After awhile I’d be singing monotone.. not like I do now.

    Comment by Charlene on May 25, 2003 @ 10:07 pm
  2. I was disappointed to hear that he wasn’t into his music to the point that he forgot how hungry he was but it makes sense. Singing a song hundreds of times is bound to make you sick of it.

    Comment by dan on May 26, 2003 @ 3:42 am
  3. I heard that Sting was really tired of singing “Every breath you take” because nearly everyone thought it was a love song. It was a disturbing song about someone who couldn’t let a relationship go.

    Comment by Renee on May 26, 2003 @ 12:20 pm
  4. Huh, I never thought much about it. I read the lyrics again and it does seem that the person is obsessed.

    A few years ago I concluded that the only distinction between a stalker and a boyfriend is whether or not the girl is interested. They both call, visit and ask her out and it’s expected behavior for the boyfriend but creepy for the non-boyfriend.

    Comment by dan on May 26, 2003 @ 12:49 pm
  5. I would add one more distinction of the stalker – quantity. If a boyfriend/girlfriend paid that much attention to someone, it would cross the line and become scary.

    Supposedly, “If you love somebody set them free” was Sting’s answer to the stalker of “Every breath you take”.

    Sting is one of my favorite artists but I would be happy to never hear another song from the Police’s Synchronicity album. As a radio junkie in the 80s, I got my fill and then some of every released single on there.

    Comment by Renee on May 26, 2003 @ 2:02 pm
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