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Billy Joel quotes (53)

Artist - musicians, painters, writers, poets, always seem to have had the most accurate perception of what is really going on around them, not the official version or the popular perception of contemporary life.
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As human beings, we need to know that we are not alone, that we are not crazy or completely out of our minds, that there are other people out there who feel as we do, live as we do, love as we do, who are like us.
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Don't make music for some vast, unseen audience or market or ratings share or even for something as tangible as money. Though it's crucial to make a living, that shouldn't be your inspiration. Do it for yourself.
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For whatever reason, not all people are born with the particular gift of being able to express ourselves through music. And, believe me, it is a gift.
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Have you listened to the radio lately? Have you heard the canned, frozen and processed product being dished up to the world as American popular music today?
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Historically, musicians know what it is like to be outside the norm - walking the high wire without a safety net. Our experience is not so different from those who march to the beat of different drummers.
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I am no longer afraid of becoming lost, because the journey back always reveals something new, and that is ultimately good for the artist.
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I am, as I've said, merely competent. But in an age of incompetence, that makes me extraordinary.
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I can't think of one person I've ever met who didn't like some type of music.
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I consider myself to be an inept pianist, a bad singer, and a merely competent songwriter. What I do, in my opinion, is by no means extraordinary.
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I definitely prefer being a lover than a fighter.
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I did write a letter to the archdiocese who'd banned the song, Only the Good Die Young, asking them to ban my next record.
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I don't care what consequence it brings, I have been a fool for lesser things.
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I don't know why people thought I was retiring.
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I have a theory that the only original things we ever do are mistakes.
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I have been both praised and criticized. The criticism stung, but the praise sometimes bothered me even more. To have received such praise and honors has always been puzzling to me.
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I keep telling people: Don't make me the poster boy for AA because I don't know a lot about sobriety, but I do know a lot about drinking.
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I never said I wasn't going to play any more. I don't know where that came from.
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I really wish I was less of a thinking man and more of a fool not afraid of rejection.
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I sold my house to Jerry Seinfeld.
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I think historically America has been pretty tolerant. It seems when there's a mass influx from one place, that's when it becomes problematic for Americans.
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I think music in itself is healing. It's an explosive expression of humanity. It's something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we're from, everyone loves music.
Billy Joel   Category: Music

I was drawn to boxing because I got beat up as a kid. I was the kid with the piano books in a New York neighbourhood.
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I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints - the sinners are much more fun.
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I'm a history nut.
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I'm probably writing music now for the same reason as I started writing songs when I was 14 - to meet women.
Billy Joel   Category:

I've crashed my car three times.
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If you are not doing what you love, you are wasting your time.
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If you make music for the human needs you have within yourself, then you do it for all humans who need the same things. You enrich humanity with the profound expression of these feelings.
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If you tell kids they can't have something, that's what they want.
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In a way, we are magicians. We are alchemists, sorcerers and wizards. We are a very strange bunch. But there is great fun in being a wizard.
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In an age of incompetence, I've been able to last in this crazy business. I actually know how to play my ax and write a song. That's my job.
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It feels great to have a #1 album.
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It's really hard to make a living as a musician. It's almost impossible.
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Like family, we are tied to each other. This is what all good musicians understand.
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More than art, more than literature, music is universally accessible.
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Most people are satisfied with the junk food being sold as music.
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Musicians now find themselves in the unlikely position of being legitimate. At least the IRS thinks so.
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Musicians want to be the loud voice for so many quiet hearts.
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My songs are like my kids.
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The good ole days weren't always good, and tomorrow ain't as bad as it seems.
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The whole world loves American movies, blue jeans, jazz and rock and roll. It is probably a better way to get to know our country than by what politicians or airline commercials represent.
Billy Joel   Category:

There's a deep-seated paranoia that Americans have about not being Americans or something.
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There's nothing better than good sex. But bad sex? A peanut butter and jelly sandwich is better than bad sex.
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Those who have expressed doubts and misgivings about their ability to live this kind of life shouldn't try, because being a musician is not something you chose to be, it is something you are.
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Twyla Tharp put it together from the material I wrote and recorded over my whole career. I thought it was pretty good, but how objective could I be?
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We are living in a time when American popular music is finally being recognized as one of our most successful exports. The demand is huge.
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When I look at great works of art or listen to inspired music, I sense intimate portraits of the specific times in which they were created.
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When I was 19, I made my first good week's pay as a club musician. It was enough money for me to quit my job at the factory and still pay the rent and buy some food. I freaked.
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When I was a young musician, the only option available to pursue secondary education in music was to attend a classical conservatory.
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Why do musicians give so much time to charitable causes? The most humanitarian cause that we can give our time to is the creation and performance of music itself.
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You want to give people a reason to hate my guts more? I'm making more money.
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You're not the only one who's made mistakes, but they're the only things that you can truly call your own.
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