Billy Joel









Billy Joel

Billy Joel

was born on May 9, 1949 in Bronx, New York. He was raised in Hicksville, New York. Joel took piano lessons because his mother insisted. He had an interest in music at an early age. His piano teacher was also a ballet teacher so he got a lot of bullying from former classmates because they thought he was taking dance lessons. Billy took boxing lessons as a teenager, so he could defend himself. He was successful in his boxing on the amateur Golden Globe circuit winning 22 bouts. He quit after he got his nose broken in his 24th boxing match. Billy saw the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964 and decided to pursue a music career so he set out to find a band to join. He found and joined the band called Echoes. They became popular in New York. While he was still a member of the Echoes, he began playing recording sessions and he was just 16 years old. He played piano for the Shangri-las’, Leader of the Pack, as well as others. He continued this routine for about two years. In 1967 he left the group and joined a group called The hassles. The band had a signed contract with United Artists Records. In a year and a half the group released 2 albums and 4 singles. They all failed commercially. They continued and released 2 albums in 1968. After the breakup of the Hassles in 1969, Billy and drummer, Jon Small, formed the duo they called, Attila. They were a keyboard and drum duo and released a debut album in 1970 and broke up the following October.

Billy released his first solo album in 1971 on the Family Productions label. The record company did not record the album at the right speed so the Billy’s voice was too high. The record company gave him very little money from the sales of the album. Billy moved to Los Angeles to get out of his contract with Family Productions and he played at the Executive Lounge piano bar. He signed with Columbia Records and released his album, The Stranger. The album produced 4 Top 40 Hits on the Billboard charts in the U. S.. The album was also certified multi-platinum. The album reached number 2 on the charts.

Billy performed at New York’s Madison Square Garden in 1999. This was considered to be his last concert and was later released as 2000 Years: The Millennium Concert. It took place on December 31, 1999 for New Year’s Eve and lasted 4 hours. It was reported that Billy Joel released another song in February, 2007. He also sang the National Anthem for the Super Bowl XLI and has been the only one to ever sing the song 2 times at a Super Bowl.