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Publisher Description

The all-access biography and unprecedented look at the life, career, and legacy of a pint-sized kid from Long Island who became a music legend.

Exhibiting unparalleled intimate knowledge, Schruers chronicles Joel’s rise to the top of the charts, from his working-class origins in Levittown and early days spent in boxing rings and sweaty clubs to his monumental success in the seventies and eighties. He also explores Joel’s creative transformation in the nineties, his dream performance with Paul McCartney at Shea Stadium in 2008, and beyond.

Along the way, Schruers reveals the stories behind all the key events and relationships—including Joel’s high-profile marriages and legal battles—that defined his path to stardom and inspired his signature songs, such as “Piano Man,” “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant,” “New York State of Mind,” and “She’s Always a Woman.” Throughout, he captures the spirit of a restless artist determined to break through by sharing, in his deeply personal lyrics, the dreams and heartbreaks of suburban American life.

Comprehensive, vibrantly written, and filled with Joel’s memories and reflections—as well as those of the family, friends, and band members who have formed his inner circle, including Christie Brinkley, Alexa Ray Joel, Jon Small, and Steve Cohen—this is the definitive account of a beloved rock star’s epic American journey.

Biographies & Memoirs
October 28
Penguin Random House LLC

Customer Reviews

Edwarddog ,

Billy Joel spilled his guts

Wonderful book that touched his life from start to present. Amazing God given talent to such a humble person. See why you and Sir Paul get along so famously. Very much alike. Read in one sittings. Was so very fortunate to see you in Nashville this year and you brought down the house. Amazing! Keep on rocking Mr Joel . Still got it!

mylifebillyjoel ,


As I started reading the first page, the author stated that Billy Joel grew up in Levittown, N.Y. which is not factual. Billy Joel’s childhood house was located In Hicksville, N.Y. (20 Meeting Lane) Sorry, I closed the book.