Billy Joel celebrates his 69th birthday today (May 9th). He has not been lucky in marriage or finance having been divorced and ripped off a lot but the dude can write a song! Where does inspiration come from? Piano Man came from him playing piano in a bar in L.A. “New York State of Mind” came to him in a flash the day he moved into his new house in upstate New York. It was on Turnstiles in 1978. He was excited about his new home and it put him in a “New York State of Mind.”
“I pretty much wrote ‘New York State of Mind’ upstate New York. I lived in Highland Falls at that time, which is right near West Point. I was on the road and I was moving into a new house and I’d never seen it before and I was waiting to get home and I moved into the house and I was just like [claps] I ran upstairs to the piano and I wrote that song out in about five minutes [sings a little of it] you know, and it was one of those really quickly written songs.”
Photo: Janet Mayer/PRPhotos.com.