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Biography of Billy Joel (Part III)

Posted on the 24 October 2011 by Musicaddictguy


Billy Joel’s major breakthrough in music industry finally happened when he released his fifth album, ‘The Stranger’ (1977). Billy Joel completed this album with helps from a famous music producer, Phil Ramone. This album is regarded as a magnum opus by critics, and standing at number 2 on Billboard album chart for 6 weeks. This album contains 9 tracks, including some of his classic hits such as ‘Movin Out’ ‘She’s The Woman’ and ‘Just the Way You Are’. ‘The Stranger’ even overtook position as the best selling album by Columbia Records from Simon and Garfunkel’s ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’. This album even ranked 67th on Rolling Stone Magazine’s 500 greatest albums of all the time. One track from this album, ‘Just The Way You Are’ won Grammy Award for record of the year and song of the year, completing his success after years of Billy Joel’s struggle in music industry.
His fifth album was a big success, and now Billy Joel became the center of public and critics attention. They really put high expectation from Billy Joel’s sixth album, hoping that he would make better album than ‘The Stranger’. In 1978 Billy Joel answered their expectation by releasing his sixth album, ‘52nd Street’. This album gained bigger success than ‘The Stranger’, ranked number 1 on Billboard album chart. This album won Grammys for best album, best male vocal performance, and best pop vocal performance. One of the track included in this album, ‘My Life’ even adopted as theme song of TV show 'Bossom Buddies’. (Note : You can see Tom Hanks on his early years in this clip)

He didn’t release album in 1979, but it was a historical year for his music career. On March 2-4th 1979 Billy Joel travelled to Cuba and performed live on Havana Jam music festival. This festival was held on Karl Marx Theatre in Havana, and filled with many international jazz musicians and local musician. Billy Joel’s performance was captured on Ernesto Juan Castellano’s documentary ‘Havana Jam ‘79’.    


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