Archive for New York State of Mind

Review: “The Stranger: 30th Anniversary Edition,” Billy Joel

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 21, 2008 by 30daysout

In 1977, Billy Joel’s career was floundering. He had recorded four albums with no hits and Columbia Records was thinking of dropping him. So he decided to meet with the greatest producer of all time, George Martin (The Beatles. Enough said). Martin liked Joel’s material, but wanted to use studio musicians. Joel wanted to use his band, so it didn’t work out.

He then set up a meeting with Phil Ramone, who Joel said, produced a lot of records that he liked. He invited him to his concert at Carnegie Hall in early June, 1977, and as they say, the rest is history.

Joel and his band went into the studio in July and finished The Stranger in late August. Nobody knew it would be his breakthrough album, as Joel puts it, “we just liked what we had done.” The first single off the disc was “Just the Way You Are.”

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