Live: Billy Joel in Indianapolis

The house was packed, the expectations were high and the excitement from a sold out crowd was so heavy it couldn’t help but rub off on you when Billy Joel came to Indianapolis’ Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the venue’s first headline show in 18 years from the piano rock legend. With no opener or support act, the evening was all Joel’s and he made sure the wait was worth it for the Indianapolis faithful, playing for almost 2 and a half hours with 26 songs. The set saw Joel pitting song against song numerous times, often surprised by the crowd’s choices and some of the deep cuts from his earlier albums made their way into the set, making the diehard Joel fans very, very happy. The iconic rock pianist took time to talk to the fans on numerous occasions, he was in very good spirits- sometimes joking around. “Hello, I’m Billy’s father,” Joel said with a laugh that was returned and matched by the crowd. One song choice came from one of Joel’s poorly-selling albums, which he asked the crowd if they owned and quickly joked about the album’s lack of success. “Come on, no one bought that album,” he quipped. “I don’t even have a copy of it,” which was met with a roar of laughter. He took time to talk to the capacity crowd about hearing The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band when he was a kid and realizing that’s what he wanted to do for the rest of his life, which led to an impressive cover of “A Day In The Life.” His stage production and light show was impressive and his eight-piece backing band was as energetic and talented as any other you’ll see. Compete with Joel’s spinning piano, it was a show that truly gave fans their money’s worth. The Indianapolis show saw Joel doing it all- not only did he blow us away with his legendary piano-playing but he also owned every inch of the stage as well as breaking out the guitar from time to time. After “Piano Man” brought an overwhelming and deafening reaction from the crowd- so loud you could barely hear Joel himself, the the night ended with an encore of classics “We Didn’t Start The Fire,” “Uptown Girl,” “Big Shot,” “Only The Good Die Young” and “You May Be Right,” capping off the night as strongly and as powerful as it began. -Reggie Edwards \"Click