Song Lyric Sunday | “Piano Man” – Billy Joel

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Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.

This week’s theme is  “Occupation.”

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FUN FACTS:

  • The “waitress practicing politics” is Elizabeth Weber, who ended up becoming his first wife when Joel married her in 1973 (they divorced in 1982).
  • Joel played under the name Bill Martin, which explains why the patrons in the song call him Bill. Martin is his middle name.
  • Piano Man is the first song and title track to Joel’s breakthrough album, which he released after signing with Columbia Records. His first album was released by Family Records in 1971, and the contract Joel signed to get that deal came back to haunt him. As is often the case with young musicians, Joel did not understand the contract, and it bound him “for life” to the label. Joel was forced to pay royalties to Family for years after breaking the deal and signing with Columbia.

Enjoy!

See my Song Lyric Sunday selection on Nesie’s Place.

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Disclaimer: I have no copyrights to the song and/or video and/or hyperlinks to songs and/or videos and/or gifs above. No copyright infringement intended.

Piano Man

by Billy Joel
Songwriter: Billy Joel

It’s nine o’clock on a Saturday
The regular crowd shuffles in
There’s an old man sitting next to me
Makin’ love to his tonic and gin

He says, “son, can you play me a memory?
I’m not really sure how it goes
But it’s sad and it’s sweet and I knew it complete
When I wore a younger man’s clothes”

La la la, di da da
La la, di da da da dum

Sing us a song, you’re the piano man
Sing us a song tonight
Well, we’re all in the mood for a melody
And you’ve got us feelin’ alright

Now John at the bar is a friend of mine
He gets me my drinks for free
And he’s quick with a joke or to light up your smoke
But there’s someplace that he’d rather be

And the waitress is practicing politics
As the businessmen slowly get stoned
Yes, they’re sharing a drink they call loneliness
But it’s better than drinkin’ alone

Sing us a song, you’re the piano man
Sing us a song tonight
Well, we’re all in the mood for a melody
And you got us feeling alright

It’s a pretty good crowd for a Saturday
And the manager gives me a smile
‘Cause he knows that it’s me they’ve been comin’ to see
To forget about life for a while
And the piano, it sounds like a carnival
And the microphone smells like a beer
And they sit at the bar and put bread in my jar
And say, “man, what are you doin’ here?”

Oh, la la la, di da da
La la, di da da da dum

Sing us a song, you’re the piano man
Sing us a song tonight
Well, we’re all in the mood for a melody
And you got us feeling alright

 

10 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday | “Piano Man” – Billy Joel

  1. You picked two awesome ones today! I saw Billy Joel in concert a couple of times (once with Elton John). When he would sit at the piano and do this song he could turn a large concrete stadium into a small bar with a bunch of regular patrons. Thanks again.

    Like

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