I got a couple angry comments to my recent post, "Billy Joel is a Jerk." Yeah, I admit, I have a love/hate relationship with the guy. I love him because I grew up with his music, and as a Long Islander he's practically a local hero. On the other hand I hate him because he's eschewed pop music (for dubious reasons) and he's become a greedy bastard who milks his fans for every penny.
He gave me more ammo recently when it was announced that he'd be performing the last concert ever at Shea Stadium. Tickets went on sale, and sold out in like an hour or something. So what did they do? Added a second show, of course! Meaning, those 50,000 people who bought tickets to what they thought was the Last Concert Ever At Shea Stadium suddenly found themselves with tickets to... The Second-To-Last Concert Ever at Shea Stadium. Nice.
"Forgiveable," people said to me. It's nothing to get worked up about. I just have a bias against the guy and will look for any reason to dis him, they said. OK. It's going to be the same concert anyway, right? Yeah, except until the concerts actually happened.
The Wednesday night show, according to a friend of mine who was there, featured an overweight, out-of-breath, "pumpkin-headed" Joel who was barely able to hit the notes. But the stage looked cool. And there were special guests! A group of A-minus list pop stars like John Mellencamp, the overrated John Mayer, and Don Henley. OK, not bad.
Until Friday night rolls around. Same pumpkin-head, same stage... But the special guests? A little different. How about Roger Daltrey, Garth Brooks, Steven Tyler, and... Paul F*ckin McCartney. Are you kidding me? Are you KIDDING Me. Everyone knows The Beatles performance at Shea Stadium (the first concert ever at Shea) in 1965 is one of the most famous concerts of all time, and who better to put a lid on the whole thing than Sir Paul himself. (Yes, McCartney was in a band before Wings) Holy moly. So, you still don't think the Wednesday-nighters got ripped off?