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Review: Billy Joel releases fantastic ’50 Years of the Piano Man’ compilation

Billy Joel’s “50 Years of the Piano Man” is a fantastic collection of songs that was released in April of 2022 via Columbia Records.

Billy Joel
Billy Joel. Photo Credit: Myrna Suarez
Billy Joel. Photo Credit: Myrna Suarez

Billy Joel’s “50 Years of the Piano Man” is a fantastic collection of songs that was released in April of 2022 via Columbia Records.

This is an eclectic compilation of 50 hits that span five decades of Joel’s illustrious career in the music and entertainment business.

Joel is a distinguished American musician, singer-songwriter, and composer. Commonly known as the “Piano Man,” he has led a successful career as a solo artist having released 12 studio albums from 1971 to 1993, as well as one studio album in 2001. He is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, with over 150 million records sold worldwide.

“50 Years of the Piano Man” opens with his signature tune, the timeless “Piano Man” and it is followed by “Uptown Girl” and “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” where he is able to give his audience a significant history lesson.

“Vienna” is a polished ballad filled with vivid imagery while “My Life” is liberating and unapologetic. “Just the Way You Are” is a neat love song and he picks up the pace with the vivacious “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” and the sassy “Only The Good Die Young.”

After putting his listeners in a “New York State of Mind,” Joel he throws in a little doo-wop in the mix with “The Longest Time” and it is followed by “Zanzibar” and “Everybody Loves You Now.”

“She’s Always a Woman” is yet another stellar ballad and equally noteworthy are “A Matter of Trust” and the enthralling “Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway),” which is the quintessential opening tune for any Billy Joel live concert.

“The Downeaster ‘Alexa'” is sheer bliss and equally remarkable is “Don’t Ask Me Why.” It features a refreshing and remastered version of “The Entertainer” and he picks up the pace with “Pressure,” where he shows some attitude, and breaks into another powerhouse tune “Scenes From An Italian Restaurant.”

Other standout tracks include “Keeping the Faith,” “Say Goodbye to Hollywood,” “Movin’ Out,” “Allentown,” “This is the Time,” “I Go to Extremes,” “All For Leyna” and “Goodnight Saigon.”

This compilation closes with four live songs from 1976, which include “The Ballad of Billy the Kid,” “Summer, Highland Falls,” “New York State of Mind” and “Souvenir.”

“50 Years of the Piano Man” is available on digital service providers by clicking here. It is a must for all fans and listeners of Billy Joel. It is evident that these songs will never go out of style, and Billy Joel will go down in history as one of the greatest and most prolific singer-songwriters, pianists, and storytellers that music has ever known. “50 Years of the Piano Man” garners an A+ rating.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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