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The Stranger - Billy Joel (1977)

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Published on Apr 17, 2011

"The Stranger" was a song by rock artist Billy Joel from his 1977 album of the same name, "The Stranger", about the id of the human psyche where desire and primal instincts are supposedly held in check by the superego, according to the theories of Sigmund Freud. Joel originally wanted the melody to be played by some kind of wind instrument, suggesting a clarinet. But after Joel demonstrated the melody by whistling it, producer Phil Ramone convinced Joel to scrap the idea of a clarinet and whistle instead. The aforementioned whistling at the opening and closing was, consciously or unconsciously, inspired by the Alessandro Alessandroni tune of the same name. "The Stranger" was the fifth studio album by Joel, released in 1977. While his four previous albums had been moderate chart successes, this was his breakthrough album, and is generally regarded by critics as his 'magnum opus', spending six weeks at #2 in the U.S. album charts. It remains Joel's best-selling non-compilation album to date and was ranked number 67 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. William Martin 'Billy' Joel (born May 9, 1949) is an American musician and pianist, singer-songwriter, and classical composer. Since releasing his first hit song, "Piano Man", in 1973, Joel has become the sixth best-selling recording artist and the third best-selling solo artist in the United States, according to the RIAA. Joel had Top 40 hits in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, achieving 33 Top 40 hits in the United States, all of which he wrote himself. He is also a six-time Grammy Award winner, a 23-time Grammy nominee and has sold over 150 million records worldwide. He was inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame (1992), the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1999), the Long Island Music Hall of Fame (2006) and the Hit Parade Hall of Fame (2009). Joel 'retired' from recording pop music in 1993 but continues to tour. This channel is dedicated to the classic rock hits that have become part of the history of our culture. The incredible AOR tracks that define music from the late 60s, the 70s and the early 80s . . . Classic Rock is here!

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Copyright 1977 Columbia Records
All Rights Reserved

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