This just in: Billy Joel is to close Shea Stadium with a concert after the 2008 baseball season.
The news was reported in Tuesday's Newsday.
According to the paper:
Start planning, Billy Joel fans. The Piano Man is now set for two major honors that show not just the depth of his talent, but the breadth of his appeal.
The Long Island Philharmonic confirmed Tuesday that it will honor Joel at its 30th annual gala as a longtime supporter of the orchestra and his advocacy of music education.
Joel is also set to be the final performer at Shea Stadium, doing a string of concerts at the stadium, which is set for demolition after the 2008 Mets season, sources confirmed Monday.
No dates are set for Joel's Shea Stadium run either. (Obviously, the Mets' playoff fortunes next year could factor into that.) Joel has already played Yankee Stadium and captured that in the concert film "Live at Yankee Stadium" in 1990, but never Shea.
The number of shows is also not set, though considering Joel holds the record for his 12 sold-out shows in a single run at Madison Square Garden, making him the first musician to ever have his "number" hang there, his run could last a while."
Readers of Loge13 know all about the rich rock & roll history of Shea. The essential icons of 20th century music history have all played at Shea Stadium: The Beatles, The Stones, The Who, Jethro Tull, etc.
Is Billy Joel the appropriate artist to deliver the musical eulogy to this hallowed ground? Who knows. Nothing less than a bill featuring Grand Funk Railroad, The Rutles (oh wait: they played Che Stadium) and the surviving Beatles would suffice as true tribute.
So it might as well be Billy Joel. But I always thought he was a Yankee fan. Don't be surprised if we hear later that he will also close Yankee Stadium after the 2008 season as well.