Let me say, without reservation, I am a Billy Joel fan. I have been for years. Be he loved, or loathed (most often by critics), I was down with him. “Piano Man,” “Captain Jack,” “Just The Way You Are,” “Honesty,” “You May Be Right” and on and on…I loved them. Yes, some more than others but all of them were fine with me. And it is with glee, and a sense of joy, that I present a Billy Joel song for Flashback Friday.
This Flashback Friday (and this song in particular) was suggested by one of my WP blogger friends (and if you are reading, you know who you are) during a conversation about our shared love of Mr. Joel’s music. As we compared our favorites, we eventually began discussing the song chosen for today’s post. My friend recounted how special the song was to her, while I loved the structure, the melody and the hints of doo-wop with call and response in the vocals. It’s a finger-snapping, toe-tapping good time, the way the song is sung.
Hard to believe that this top 10 pop hit was one of the last songs Billy Joel created to crack the pop charts. As is well documented by now, save for some live albums, there has been no new music from Joel for over twenty years. But who needs new music, when you can tour on the hits (and Joel has a ton of hits) for years on end for vast sums of money? He’s become “The Entertainer,” indeed.
To me, the song sounds like something he could have included on his An Innocent Man album, itself a mix of older rock-styled songs. As I stated before, I love the backing vocals, and Joel’s lead has a little doo-wop to it, especially as he fades to the end with what sounds like a nod to the doo-wop classic “Gloria,” by the Cadillacs. It’s just a swinging song, well sung.
And I like it. My house, my rules. Enjoy “The River Of Dreams.”