Everyone knows the classic Billy Joel songs. "Uptown Girl," "Piano Man," "Only the Good Die Young," etc. But have you ever taken a moment to truly listen to a Billy Joel song and appreciate the lyrics? His lyrics are incomparable to any other artist. Joel takes inspiration from prominent real-world events and things that he witnesses in his own life and neighborhood and turns them into beautiful poems set to beautiful melodies.
Here are 14 lyrics that prove that Billy Joel is the ultimate king of songwriting.
"We Didn't Start the Fire"
The entire song, really.
"I can always find someone
To say they sympathize
If I wear my heart out on my sleeve
But I don't want some pretty face
To tell me pretty lies
All I want is someone to believe"
"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"
"The River of Dreams"
"I don't know why I go walking at night
But now I'm tired and I don't want to walk anymore
I hope it doesn't take the rest of my life
Until I find what it is that I've been looking for"
"She's Always a Woman"
"She can do as she pleases, she's nobody's fool
But she can't be convicted, she's earned her degree
And the most she will do is throw shadows at you
But she's always a woman to me"
"We came in spastic
Like tameless horses
We left in plastic
As numbered corpses"
"Just The Way You Are"
"I wouldn't leave you in times of trouble
We never could have come this far
I took the good times; I'll take the bad times
I'll take you just the way you are"
"New York State of Mind"
"It was so easy livin' day by day
Out of touch with the rhythym and blues
But now I need a little give and take
The New York Times, the Daily News"
"You're My Home"
"If I travel all my life
And I never get stop and settle down
Long as I have you by my side
There's a roof above and good walls all around
You're my castle, you're my cabin
And my instant pleasure dome
I need you in my house
'Cause you're my home"
"Only the Good Die Young"
"The stained-glass curtain you're hiding behind
Never lets in the sun
Darlin' only the good die young"
"It's Still Rock and Roll To Me"
"Oh, what's the matter with the crowd I'm seeing?
'Don't you know that they're out of touch?'
Well, should I try to be a straight-A student?
'If you are then you think too much'"
"You May Be Right"
"Remember how I found you there
Alone in your electric chair
I told you dirty jokes until you smiled
You were lonely for a man
I said take me as I am
'Cause you might enjoy some madness for a while"
"The Ballad of Billy the Kid"
"Well he never traveled heavy
yes he always rode alone
and he soon put many older guns to shame
and he never had a sweetheart
but he finally found a home
under the boothill grave that bears his name."
"You've got your passion, you've got your pride
But don't you know that only fools are satisfied?
Dream on, but don't imagine they'll all come true
When will you realize, Vienna waits for you?"