One of the most prolific rock pianists of the past forty years is undoubtedly Billy Joel. Another contender for the title would-be-Elton John, whom Joel continues to play tour dates with to this day. Regardless, Joel has become an iconic figure in the world of rock, specifically for his virtuosity in utilizing the piano on multi-platinum albums that span decades. As the third best-selling solo artist in the US, Billy Joel's recording career has significantly decreased in the past ten years, but continues to perform tour dates around the world that serve as a constant reminder to the legacy he has created in the world of music.
As the son of a talented classical pianist, Billy Joel began learning the instrument from a very young age. During high school, Joel beganrecorded and performed tour dates with groups like The Hassels and Attila. Billy Joel's debut album didn't garner much attention and spent much of 1971 and '72 playing tour dates at clubs in New York and LA. This experience led to the creation of "Piano Man," the title track for Billy Joel's breakthrough second album. Joel's tour dates were becoming immensely popular by this time and he scored his next big hit in 1977 with the release of The Stranger. The album quickly went diamond, won two Grammys, and featured the hit singles "Just the Way You Are" and "Only the Good Die Young."
Billy Joel's follow-up album, 52nd Street, experienced similar success, this time reaching #1 on the charts and becoming the first commercial album ever to be sold on compact disc. The iconic album was followed by an iconic tour date at the Havana Jam in 1979, where Joel played the finale of the festival and created non-violent hysteria in the crowd. Billy Joel soon developed more of a traditional rock sound that captured the spirit of the 80s, which shown on albums like Glass Houses, The Nylon Curtain, and An Innocent Man. In 1986, Billy Joel embarked on more historic tour dates when he played in the Soviet Union. Joel's last lyrical studio album was 1993's River of Dreams, which featured a more serious tone due to betrayals by individuals in Joel's personal life. The album went platinum five times and was followed by what Joel then called his last concert date at "The Night of 2000 Years" millennium concert at Madison Square Garden.
Though Billy Joel has continued to play tour dates, the only studio album he's released since 1993 has been Fantasies & Delusions, a collection of original classical piano compositions. For all the latest on Billy Joel's tour dates and upcoming albums, be sure to check Eventful often.
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