Honesty (1979)

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By: Billy Joel (born William Martin Joel May 9, 1949 in the Levittown section of Hicksville, New York).

Billy Joel is an American musician and pianist, singer-songwriter and classical composer. According to the RIAA, he is the sixth best-selling recording artist of all time and the third best-selling solo artist of all time in the United States.

Joel left high school without a diploma to begin a career in music. "I told them, '. . . If I'm not going to Columbia University, I'm going to Columbia Records and you don't need a high school diploma over there'." Ironically, Columbia Records later signed him. In 1992, he submitted essays to the school board and was awarded his diploma at Hicksville High's annual graduation ceremony 25 years after he had left.

"Honesty" was released in 1979 as the third single from the album 52nd Street.

Producer Phil Ramone said, for the recording of "Honesty", it "sounded better after everyone had eaten. The food slowed their metabolism and curbed their aggression, which is exactly what the tempo of certain songs needed."

It was nominated in 1980 for the Grammy Award for Song of the Year, but lost to "What A Fool Believes" (the Doobie Brothers). However,
52nd Street did win the Grammy for Album of the Year.

In 2003, the album was ranked #352 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

Chart position:
#24 (US), #9 (US Adult Contemporary).

It was the album's third consecutive top 40 hit, after
"My Life" and "Big Shot".
Written by:
Billy Joel.

Joel also wrote such songs as
"Piano Man", "Just The Way You Are", "Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)", "She's Always A Woman", "My Life", "Big Shot", "It's Still Rock And Roll To Me", "Don't Ask Me Why", "She's Got A Way", "Tell Her About It", "Uptown Girl", "The Longest Time", "Leave A Tender Moment Alone", "We Didn't Start The Fire", "I Go To Extremes" and "The River Of Dreams".

The original title was "Home Again", with the chorus beginning: "Home again, get me out of here..." According to Joel: "We were in Europe or on the road for a long time and I just wanted to go home again."

Joel also said: "My music and lyrics aren't written at the same time. I always write the music first. A lot of times I write bail-out lyrics, just to carry along a melody while I work on the real lyrics . . . "

"Though the two have to fit together, for the language is really secondary . . . It may take me a year to figure why I wrote some of the songs I did, why I said some of the things I said and what I really meant."

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