club D

I'm a 38-year-old gal, living in the Washington, DC area, who loves going to concerts of all kinds. My blog tracks most shows I attend. Hope you enjoy, and feel free to comment!

Friday, March 17, 2006

Billy Joel: Round 2

Recommended Beverage to go with this show:
Ginger ale (hey Billy's off the booze, so why not?)

Billy Joel, who played the Verizon Center in Washington, DC on March 16, truly continues to sound in top form on this tour and, as a testament to that, he effortlessly hit the high notes on the song, "An Innocent Man." On earlier tours, he needed the aid of a backup singer. On occasion, at this show, he did need the aid of a teleprompter for his lyrics but, hey, he's been in this business a long time and he's earned it. Plus, who can remember all those words to "We Didn't Start the Fire" anyway?

Joel changed up the setlist quite a bit from the show I saw in Boston back in January, and I was quite happy with this other set of "oldies" he delivered. He whipped out "The Entertainer" from the 1974 Streetlife Serenade album, joking that probably only 10 people had bought this album. I, proudly, am one of them. He also performed "Captain Jack," a fan fav from the Piano Man album; in Boston, fans instead heard "Ballad of Billy the Kid" from that album. Joel traded "Stiletto," which he had performed in Boston, for "My Life" from the 52nd Street album. He managed to play at least one song from every album from Cold Spring Harbor onward but, again, mercifully, excluded all songs from The Bridge album from his set.

From Glass Houses, he treated us to "Don't Ask Me Why" which sounded as fresh as it did back in 1980. He performed that one at a rear-stage keyboard, giving fans like me seated behind the stage a great view. He then ran to the other rear-stage keyboard for "Pressure." He also performed "Downeaster Alexa" from Stormfront, prefacing it with a story from his days when he had a house on Martha's Vineyard. He said a local fisherman there would come back and bring him fresh lobsters, but one day the man didn't return.

This crowd seemed more accepting of his rarer tunes (or perhaps I just sat in a friendlier, happier section this time). Joel was having fun up there, joking with the audience, in good spirits and again joking about his sober status. During "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" during the encore, he sang, "A bottle of red, a bottle of white, I won't be having either one tonight" and the crowd roared. Everyone, as always, got on their feet for the last song, Piano Man, and as always, for the nearly three-hour show, he had us "feeling alright."

SETLIST (arranged by album)

Cold Spring Harbor
Everybody Loves You Now

Piano Man
Captain Jack
Piano Man (last song)

Streetlife Serenade
The Entertainer

Prelude/Angry Young Man (first song)
New York State of Mind

The Stranger
Only the Good Die Young (in encore)
Scenes from an Italian Restaurant (in encore)
Movin' Out
She's Always A Woman

52nd Street
My Life
Big Shot

Glass Houses
Don't Ask Me Why
It's Still Rock & Roll
You May Be Right

Nylon Curtain
Goodnight Saigon

Innocent Man
An Innocent Man
Keepin' the Faith

The Bridge
nada (thank you!)

Downeaster Alexa
I Go to Extremes
We Didn't Start the Fire

River of Dreams
River of Dreams

and completely random: his roadie sang ACDC's Highway to Hell (I'm serious).


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