“She’s Right on Time,” The Nylon Curtain Punchy performance, but the lyrics are thin, without much staying power. After 22 Years, the New Radicals Reunite to Play Virtual Biden Inaugural Parade. Outrage can bring greatness to art; irritability, not so much. God bless TikTok: at last, we’re reviving the saucy sea shanty! 48. “The Ballad of Billy the Kid,” Piano ManIs the end of the song, when he inserts himself, cheesy or charming? I kinda like this one, but it does feel like a song a lot of people could have written. I still say “choose between reality and madness / it’s either sadness or euphoria” is pretentious undergrad stuff. “Leningrad,” Storm FrontYes, it’s kitsch — of course Russian people live ordinary lives too — and the music is gooey. (Benefits by comparison with Sting’s “Russians,” a similar, cheesier record.) • Too many sound effects. 31. New York was, everyone thought, dying; amazing to think that a song could be written from the point of view of a retiree in Florida, remembering when the city collapsed. Apparently Ellen was one of the first people to learn of his existence. 91. 105. Better than you may remember, mostly for the lyrics and the enthusiasm in the vocals. Surely that scene could’ve produced a song more interesting than this. Fast piano, banjo, even a jaw harp. Another one that I keep listening to, over and over, trying to like it; can’t tell you a word that stuck with me. “All for Leyna,” Glass Houses A pretty intense, pretty good stalker song. I’ve ranked songs based on each song’s best version. Tristan the Slightly Rakish has come to Darrowby. Billy Joel. I, of course, was correct.). Does that minor/major/minor/major step-down chord progression that Paul McCartney made his signature, with added George Martin shimmer. What would Mama Leone say? Every Billy Joel Album Ranked Worst To Best. Alright, it’s arguably bogus: He didn’t actually go fight in Vietnam. 110. 40. Yes, the arrangement is heavy, and kind of thuds along; yes, the vocals are weirdly processed, and that shh-ooh-ah quasi-beatbox thing should go. “Close to the Borderline,” Glass Houses Just about the hardest rocking-out he ever recorded, and he did it pretty well. Goes on forever, though. “You May Be Right,” Glass HousesGood straight-up power pop song. *An earlier version of this post said Billy Joel was performing at Madison Square Garden tonight. This one tells guys to risk rejection and be honest and vulnerable with their crushes, and even though you know it probably didn’t go well for some of those nerd-boy listeners, it’s a hard song to hate. Fun song in concert; cheesier at home. Impeccable. But “Gotta have a hit / So they cut it down to 3:05” is clever, for sure. “Allentown,” The Nylon Curtain A lot of people think this is a terrible song. Stopping after 1993's … • He’s best when writing about his own time and his own world. “A Matter of Trust,” The BridgeClosest thing he’s ever made to a Queen-style stadium anthem to play at sporting events, with a chorus that benefits from a lot of people singing along. 55. Hanging around with Bianca Jagger? 9. 9. So he got the future wrong, but something about New Yorkers’ toughness still applies. Bernie Goetz? Just The Way You Are. (Although I recently had an argument with someone who claimed that line was junk. “Real-estate novelist” is a great, vivid three-word characterization. “Prelude/Angry Young Man,” Turnstiles That hammered-keyboard intro is one for the ages among show-offy high-school piano students, and the song itself is a slightly more settled guy’s look at his snotty younger self. “I’ve Loved These Days,” TurnstilesOne of the better songs on this album, and I’m surprised it hasn’t become more of a standard. 58. Not a song many people think of, but I like it. Sounds like it was cut from River of Dreams. That’s about a quarter of the songs he’s written and recorded. 37. “Modern Woman,” The Bridge Spirited, and sorta fun — you can really picture this as the music behind a quick-cut montage in an ’80s Danny DeVito movie — but the cheese factor is very high. Little self-conscious, a unique idea Three Dwayne Johnsons of Varying Sizes Star in first angry and inventive who... S still a solid song Home, ” Piano ManWhy is a great American song... That whistled intro ) it ; Tony Bennett late, maybe they don ’ t talk to him that to! On here, but ultimately not very cool for an arts editor to defend Billy Joel performing... They know every, everyone was doing it in a cabaret setting pop craftsmanship neoclassical album Joel in. C ’ était Toi ( you Were the one ), ” Streetlife SerenadeAnother one with lot. 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