Billy Joel is featured on the cover of the May/June edition of American Songwriter. The digital edition of the magazine is available at iTunes and Google Play for the iPad and Android-compatible devices. Here is an excerpt:
“I notice that when I wake up in the morning, I’m singing something or humming something,” says Billy Joel. “I have something going on in my head – some music, some kind of theme – just about every day.”
… Visiting Billy Joel, 65, at his North Shore estate immediately turns into a crash course on his storied history. He gestures across the water, pointing out Cold Spring Harbor – the community which gave its name to his 1971 debut album. He is talkative and candid, but what he seems most excited about is the new music he’s writing, whether or not it ever sees the light of day.
“I used to listen to classical music when I was a little boy, and I kind of went away from it,” he says. “I compare it to being seduced by a girl with torn fishnets and mascara, who smokes cigarettes and dragged me away for a good 30 years. Then I rediscovered the girl next door, which was classical music. My favorite composer is Beethoven, because he would change his mood in the middle of a piece. He’d be going along, and it’d be nice, and then all of a sudden there’d be the sturm und drang, drama and tragedy. It was exciting. I always subscribed to that kind of writing. Wherever your mood takes you, that’s what you should be writing.”