• Review
  • News

REVIEW: Billy Joel at Great American Ball Park

Photo Cred: Michael Gabbard Photography

You guys, writing for CincyMusic is so cool. All I have to do is love music and write some articles every now and then, and as a result I get to meet cool people involved within the Cincinnati music scene. Sometimes, I get an email from our editor asking if anyone wants to go to the Great American Ball Park and watch Billy Joel on a warm, early September night. When I get that email, the answer is yes.

Billy Joel is the first artist I remember singing along to as a kid. He has so many good songs, and everything he sings falls right into my vocal range. That means karaoke bars all over the place have heard my version of his songs, usually "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant", and whatever song I pick it ends up leading the crowd in a sing-along anyway. That's the way the Great American Ball Park was on Friday night. From the very first line of his very first song to the very last note of the encore, 36,000 people sang along to every word. The experience was amazing, not just that we all got to experience it but also that people would look around and smile with each other as they leaned into every word.

Joel hasn't released a new album in many years, so his entire catalog has been out there long enough to be found and absorbed. The number of hits and singles he has produced is staggering, but beyond that, he is the kind of artist whose albums play from beginning to end like stories. If you have one of his albums, you know the entire album. Friday night was a stadium of people who knew entire albums. There was equal gusto for songs off of River of Dreams as there was for Piano Man, and when it comes to delivery, every song was perfect.

 Billy Joel did not have to lean on the tricks some aging musicians do when their hands or their voices can't do what they used to. Every song was in the original key and played flawlessly. Joel looked and sounded amazing, and as a lifelong fan all I can say is I am happy for him. I am so happy to see one of my idols happy and healthy and honored by so many after such a long and storied career.

Also, the Great American Ball Park sounded amazing. I was able to walk around the stadium while I was there and there was no place with bad sound. This was my first time attending a concert of any kind there, and it instantly became one of my favorite venues I've ever been to. See any show there and you won't be disappointed. What a great night.

Billy Joel

Open Album


· Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)

· Pressure

· The Entertainer

· Vienna

· Zanzibar

· Don't Ask Me Why

· A Whiter Shade of Pale

· The Downeaster Alexa

· New York State of Mind

· Allentown

· Say Goodbye to Hollywood

· She's Always a Woman

· My Life

· Only the Good Die Young

· Sometimes a Fantasy

· The River of Dreams

· Nessun dorma

· Scenes From an Italian Restaurant

· Piano Man

· Encore:

· We Didn't Start the Fire

· Uptown Girl

· It's Still Rock and Roll to Me

· Brown Sugar

· Big Shot

· You May Be Right