Billy Joel-“The Downeaster ‘Alexa’ “-1990

Hard to pick a favorite with Billy Joel but this song has to be up there for me. It is common knowledge that the song highlights the plight of the Baymen in New York who fish and have gone through terrible hardship. I won’t presume to comment on that because I grew up a spoiled kid from California so I don’t feel qualified to speak about what could be a sensitive issue. Far be it from me to speak out of turn.

I will say that this song is much like Harry Chapin’s “Cat’s in the Cradle” or Bob Dylan’s “Times they are a Changing” inasmuch as it is a catchy, beautiful song with a very sad message.

Another thing I appreciate about this song is how it highlights Billy Joel’s range. That has always been one of the things I loved best about him. If you compare this piece to a piece like “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” or (arguably his most famous) “We Didn’t Start the Fire” the two songs are ostensibly different but still have the common thread of Joel’s powerful pipes. “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” is almost a pop piece with a throwback to the classic days of Rock and Roll whereas “Alexa” has almost a rock opera feel to it.

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2 responses to “Billy Joel-“The Downeaster ‘Alexa’ “-1990

  • "Elizabeth"

    One of my favourite songs! I can never resist plugging in my headphones and jacking up the volume as high as my aging ears can take it.
    I missed a couple of your posts since I’ve been gone, and I’ve made sure to follow your blog via email so that I don’t miss any funnies you share 🙂

  • bishopandwarlord

    glad to see you back! I got sad when I went to your page and it wasn’t there! great to have you commenting again!!

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