Stellar Storyteller Songwriters of the Seventies by Mel Rosenberg - מל רוזנברג - Ourboox.com
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Stellar Storyteller Songwriters of the Seventies

I'm a writer, scientist, musician, inventor and lecturer. During the daytime I am advisor to the President of Shenkar College. Read More
Member Since
Oct 2013
Published Books
1404

Before we begin, let’s recall the criteria we discussed in class.

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Elton John has been singing songs we love since the late 1960s. Although he doesn’t pen the lyrics (Bernie Taupin writes most of them), he writes the music and carries the song in a way that noone else can. Daniel is one of his classics from 1973.

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And he does have this new movie.

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He even has his own ebook!

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Elton John started his successful path around 1970, a little before Billy Joel (1973), they both are piano men, have last names that are first names, they performed together, and the tour (Face to Face) was ‘billed’ “Rocket Man meets Piano Man”. Billy even gets a mention in Tiny Dancer:

“Piano man he makes his stand
In the auditorium”

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It took Billy Joel almost thirty years to finish high school.

He studied piano reluctantly at the behest of his mother.

Rather than attend summer school to earn his diploma, Joel decided to begin a career in music: “I told them, ‘To hell with it. 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’.”[18] Joel did eventually sign with Columbia.

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In 1992, he submitted essays to the school board and was awarded his diploma at Hicksville High’s annual-graduation ceremony, 25 years after leaving.

He played and sang cover songs during the sixties often imitating other singers.

His song Piano Man is about real people. Wonder what ever happened to them?

The Story of How Billy Joel Became the ‘Piano Man’

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He likes Yiddish. “I like the Lower East Side humor, the food. I think the Yiddish language is terrifically expressive. Does that make me a complete Jew or a partial Jew? I’m not really sure”.[111]

According to Wikipedia, he thinks that left-handed piano players have an advantage (so do I). Joel has no bone in the top of his left thumb, since his 1982 motorcycle accident. Joel is right-handed, though he believes left-handed people have an advantage when playing the piano

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His road to success was tortuous. He didn’t give up.

His song “We didn’t start the fire” is a great way to study history.

He’s been married three more times than I have.

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We didn’t start the fire – a great way to learn history here 

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Billy Joel – now let’s hear Just the Way You Are from 1977.

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And now a guitar guy.

James Taylor gained fame with his Fire and Rain in 1970, and for his rendition of Carole King’s You’ve Got a Friend (and many others).

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Carole King started her stellar career with Gerry Goffin at the outset of the sixties, but her fame as a solo recording artist resulted from Tapestry, in 1971. Here is her singing the song which James Taylor turned into a number one hit.

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and together….

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Leonard Cohen

Chelsea Hotel #2

 

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Song starts at 2:33

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Janis Ian    At Seventeen (1975)

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Paul Simon

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Don McLean 

Vincent (written in 1971)

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listen from 0:44, first five notes

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Freddie Mercury

from Wikipedia: “A research team undertook a study in 2016 to understand the appeal behind Mercury’s voice.[40] Led by Professor Christian Herbst, the team identified his notably faster vibrato and use of subharmonics as unique characteristics of Mercury’s voice, particularly in comparison to opera singers, and confirmed a vocal range from F#2 to G5 (just over 3 octaves) but were unable to confirm claims of a 4-octave range.[41] The research team studied vocal samples from 23 commercially available Queen recordings, his solo work, and a series of interviews of the late artist. They also used an endoscopic video camera to study a rock singer brought in to imitate Mercury’s singing voice.

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Sixto Rodriguez – Sugar Man

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