life in and around NYC is insane

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Billy Joel

So last night we saw Billy Joel at Madison Square Garden.

He's doing a residency at the Garden, one concert each month from now until whenever.

We sat behind the stage, in nosebleed territory. It was the best I could do from Ticketmaster. In hindsight we should have bought better seats from Stub Hub. The folks in our section . . .if you're going to drink that much beer, maybe you should pick an aisle seat so you don't keep stepping over other people. If you leave your beer on the steps in the aisle, don't be surprised if someone kicks it over. And if you want to take a selfie, that's fine, but don't let the flash blind the people behind you.

And I am not crazy about the MSG makeover. The new box seats. . .those of us in the bleachers are lucky we are not claustrophobic.

Food choices in our section were limited. We wound up with hot dogs.

The opening act was . . . Meh. First song was decent, last song ok, but everything in between - including the Beatles cover - was boring.

But Billy . . . He sang for two hours, without intermission. A nice mix of hits and lesser known album cuts. I think he sang at least one song from every album he recorded. Here's the set list:

Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)
Summer, Highland Falls
The Longest Time
Blonde Over Blue
Everybody Loves You Now
All for Leyna
Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)
Where's the Orchestra?
Big Man on Mulberry Street
New York State of Mind
The Entertainer
She's Always a Woman
Don't Ask Me Why
The River of Dreams
Scenes From an Italian Restaurant
Piano Man
(preceded by Layla piano outro)
Big Shot
It's Still Rock and Roll to Me
You May Be Right
Only the Good Die Young

When he sings in NY he's home.  He's a Long Islander.  Born in da Bronx, raised in Hicksville, he's one of us.  We have been to Cold Spring Harbor and Hackensack, we've cruised the Miracle Mile, and no one needs to explain to us why it was crazy for Billy to walk through Bedford-Stuy alone in 1980.

The two quintessential New York songs are always on his set list.

"Miami 2017".  Written in response to a NY Daily News headline (remember "Ford to NY: Drop Dead"?), the song is full of references we understand.  And 'New York State of Mind", a song that touched this homesick college girl.  Those songs were a soothing balm to a wounded city after 9/11 and again after Superstorm Sandy.

Great concert.  I didn't want it to end.

As many hits as he sang, there are so many more he didn't play. Guess that means we have to see him again eventually.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Suzanne said...

I'm hoping the residence includes when I'm in NY in July.

You got a couple of my top ten, Where's the Orchestra and Scenes from an Italian Restaurant.

Glad you finally got to see Billy!

songbird's crazy world said...

When are you coming to NY? He's doing a concert July 2. It's sold out but I am sure there are plenty of tickets on Stub Hub.

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