On His birthday: how Billy Joel’s Three Wives stole his heart and money. He has spent much of his life in battle against his ex-wives, against booze, bad managers and bankruptcy.
Billy Joel has announced that he’ll play a massive show at London’s Wembley Stadium in June .The ‘Piano Man’ icon will play Wembley on Saturday June 22, marking his only UK date of 2019.09
William Martin Joel (born May 9, 1949) commonly nicknamed the “Piano Man”, he has been making music since the 1960s, releasing popular albums throughout the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. He was born in 1949 in The Bronx, New York, and grew up on Long Island, New York,
For someone who hasn’t really released new music in more than 20 years, Billy Joel is having an epic third act. His monthly shows gross him more than $2 million each. He has sold more than 150 million albums and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. By Maureen Callahan To reed full click here
Yet he’s always felt a failure where it most counts: love. “None of those people in the arena screaming your name really know you,” His three tortured marriages — and the music they’ve inspired — are testament to that.
The Shark – Joel and Elizabeth Weber
Joel met his first wife in 1970, through his friend and bandmate Jon Small. Elizabeth Weber was married to Small, and they had a baby son but Joel was knocked out.
When Small discovered the affair, Weber left them both, disappearing for weeks. Joel became suicidal. He was 21, broke, friendless, loveless and “crashing at my mom’s place again, which is abject failure.”
Not long after Weber took off, Joel overdosed on Nembutal, then called Small to apologize. Alarmed, Small raced to Joel’s mom’s house in Hicksville and found Joel on the floor. “The next thing I remember, I woke up in the hospital and learned that they had pumped my stomach, I thought to myself, ‘Oh, great, I couldn’t even do this right.’ It was another failure.”
A few weeks later, Joel tried again, this time drinking furniture polish.
He began writing again. Never much into drugs, he self-medicated with booze and cigarettes. He got together with Weber and agreed to manage him. They married in September 1973. “She’s Got a Way” and “She’s Always a Woman” were inspired by her,
He wrote “Just the Way You Are” as her birthday gift, and after he played it for her, she said, “Do I get the publishing, too?”
One year, he wrote “Just the Way You Are” as her birthday gift, and after he played it for her, she said, “Do I get the publishing, too?” She wasn’t kidding.
As his wife, Weber was entitled to 50 percent of Joel’s worth and was also taking a cut of his earnings as manager. “The Stranger” — were also inspired by her.
In 1982, they filed for divorce, but Joel hoped to reconcile. He agreed to buy her everything she wanted — a $4 million town house on the Upper East Side, an Alfa Romeo — but then he had a motorcycle accident, smashing both his hands. While in the hospital, doped up on pain pills and contemplating what future he might have as a musician, Weber came to visit, contract in hand. Joel recalls her asking him to sign everything he had over to her.
Years later, Joel would find Frank had siphoned nearly $30 million of his earnings “I hooked up with the Borgias!” “What a family to pick.”
The Supermodel – Joel and Christie Brinkley
Following the 1982 split with Elizabeth, Joel went to St. Bart’s for the holidays. He found a piano bar and began playing; a few moments later, to his wonderment, Elle Macpherson, then just 19, and Christie Brinkley, 28, were standing at either side of the 33-year-old — along with an undiscovered Whitney Houston.
They were all vying for Joel’s attention, Brinkley tells Schruers. “Whitney says, ‘I can sing!’ Meanwhile, Elle’s draped herself on the piano like Michelle Pfeiffer [in ‘The Fabulous Baker Boys’].”
Back in New York, Brinkley and Macpherson competed for Joel, who was living in a penthouse apartment overlooking Central Park. His doorman, a struggling actor named Nick Turturro, would rank all the women Billy brought home. “Usually, he’d hold up eight, nine, 10 fingers,” Joel told Schruers. Brinkley was the only one to get 10 fingers twice.
The first night Joel got Brinkley to come home with him, “I was trying to act cool, but somewhere inside me the kid from Hicksville was going, ‘Yesssssss!’ ” When the elevator door opened to his apartment, there stood Macpherson. To be continued.