Singer-songwriter, piano man William Martin Joel was born on May 9, 1949 in the Bronx section of New York City. As a teenager, influenced by the Beatles, he performed with local bands and on numerous recording sessions before signing with Columbia Records and moving to Los Angeles.
Yearning for his native New York, Billy returned there in 1975 after a song written about his job playing in a Los Angeles piano bar, “Piano Man” formally introduced him to radio and the Hit Parade, but it was “Just The Way You Are” in 1977 that earned him a million selling gold record. “My Life” followed a year later, with “You May Be Right” giving him more gold and a #1 hit, “It’s Still Rock And Roll To Me” in 1980.
Another #1, “Tell Her About It” in 1983, with “Uptown Girl” and
“An Innocent Man” adding additional gold for Billy Joel. Among his
other hits were, “Only The Good Die Young,” “She’s Always A
Woman,” “Honesty,” “ Don’t Ask Me Why,” “She’s Got A Way,”
“Leave A Tender Moment Alone,” “You’re Only Human,”
“Modern Woman,” “A Matter of Trust,” “We Didn’t Start The Fire”
and “I Go To Extremes.”
With his albums selling in the millions, “New York State of Mind” became a signature song for Billy Joel.
A Grammy winner, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame in 1999 and honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005. He was inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame in 2009.