Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sucker; As In Hook Line And...

Yesterday, I stopped into my friend Tom's record store ("Now Hear This" and the last of a dying breed I must say) and found this:

Now, I have owned this on LP, cassette, CD, Remastered CD and:

So, as an early addition to the Monday Night Music Club, this is our weekly selection. One filler, the rest higher than most could ever get. Billy sounded like he wasn't even trying. Piano Man was three years before and Mr. Joel was rumoured to have been under a bit of pressure to write a hit album. I'll put the first eight songs on this album with anyone's work. So now I am the proud owner of.....
1. A remastered (again) CD of the original album

2. Live at Carnegie Hall June 3, 1977

3. DVD of promotional videos, a concert at The Old Grey Whistle Test from 3/78 and a 30 minute documentary on the making of "The Stranger" featuring new interviews with Billy and Phil Ramone

That's along with various librettos and a notebook that Billy was writing in while putting the album together. It's got hand written lyrics, doodles and other interesting stuff. "Anthony's Song" was written about a neighborhood in New York. "The Stranger" is a masterpiece. "Just The Way You Are" reminds me of the overnight show on WQUA Moline and KSTT Davenport, RIGHT Before I got to KC. "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" is his "Stairway to Heaven", "Vienna" is damn close to my favorite on the record. "Only The Good Die Young" nuff said. "She's Always A Woman" was one of the underlooked classics in his career. "Get It Right The First Time" is a sweet funky number that Liberty DeVito shows his chops. "Everybody Has A Dream" is there. Meh.

One side note, while attending Farm Aid in 1986, John Mellencamp's drummer Kenny Aranoff was backstage cussing the hell out of Liberty DeVito because Billy Joel went on before Mellencamp and DeVito had busted every one Aranoff's drum heads while using his kit. Now that's playing them hard!!!

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