Friday, December 29, 2017

Strange Houses

At the end of 2014, I was hit with an urge to listen to some Billy Joel. When I was around 8 or 9 years old, he was kind of a big deal. I downloaded 52nd Street, and expected that I'd probably give it a quick spin and be done with it. That didn't happen. The album stuck with me, and I ended up listening to it multiple times, and then as we moved into 2015 I downloaded more of Billy Joel's albums, and surprisingly I was loving much so that I went to see him three consecutive years in a row play at Fenway Park in Boston.

Back in 2015, I ended up picking up a handful of Billy Joel records at a used vinyl shop in downtown Portland. The Stranger is one of my favorites from him, but unfortunately, the store didn't have that one available during my shopping spree.

I'm not a big believer in fate, but when I inherited Steve's record collection after he passed away, and I added his copy of The Stranger to my collection, it just felt "right".

My wife and I had tickets to see Billy Joel at Fenway in 2016 with my mom and Steve. He passed away three months before the show. Scenes From An Italian Restaurant, from The Stranger, was one of his favorite Billy Joel songs, and it brings back memories whenever I hear it.

The other Billy Joel record that Steve had in his collection was the Glass Houses album from 1980. I don't know...this may be my second favorite from Billy Joel. Both You May Be Right and It's Still Rock And Roll To Me were huge to me as a 10 year old, as I started expanding my tastes further and further into heavier music.

Fun fact: I had a huge crush on a girl at 10 years old...I think she was the daughter of one of my mom's friends...and we were over their house one evening, and I noticed that she had this Glass Houses record in her "collection". I didn't own any music at the time, and probably only had blank cassettes that I was recording Men At Work and Police songs from Casey Kasem's Top 40 weekly radio show, so there was nothing hotter than a girl that owned her own records. I tried to play it cool, and asked her if we could listen to the album while we were in her room, but it still didn't even get me a kiss.

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