Mayor Nancy McFarlane announced this morning that Billy Joel will be playing a concert at the ESA (PNC Arena). The hype surrounding this announcement was unprecedented. Yesterday on Twitter, Mayor McFarlane announced she was making an announcement, which led to wild speculation and hype, mainly generated by people such as myself (see ITBNN: Garth Brooks Concert at PNC Arena) and @NewRaleigh’s creation of #pncrumors. Once the Mayor announced Billy Joel would be playing, Twitter responded with a collective, “Him?”.
— Chris White (@theechriswhite) December 5, 2013
Let’s get one thing straight, Billy Joel is obviously ITB. He wrote the ITB anthem “We Didn’t Start the Fire” for Christ’s sake. Lyrics from that hit song served as an alibi for many ITBers during the great mansion fire in the late 1990s.
But after numerous trips to rehab (so ITB) and not having released an album since “River of Dreams” in 1993, he’s officially over the hill. Don’t think Billy’s sorry for partyin’ though. He has stated that he suffered from a deep depression brought on by, you guessed it, 9/11. From the interview: “9/11 just knocked the wind out of me, and I don’t know even now if I’ve recovered from it. It really, really hurt that man could do that to man. And then there was a breakup with somebody, and it took me a while to get me back on my feet again.” Sooooo yeah…
Would I love to hang out with Billy Joel and drunkenly scream the words to Piano Man and River of Dreams with him at Crowley’s? ABSOLUTELY. Do I want to go to a concert and watch him rely on the audience to sing half of his songs for him? No. Crowd singing is one of my biggest concert pet peeves. My Dad didn’t buy me and my friends this luxury box so we could listen to a bunch of crowd people sing the performer’s songs. You sing every word of your songs and you sing them well, dammit. Here’s a prime example:
on the other hand i would be totally into getting massively liquored up and yelling “CAPTAIN JACK!!!!!” for 2 hours #pncrumors
— Jason (@jbphebus) December 5, 2013
Yesterday I announced that the Mayor’s announcement would be that Garth Brooks was playing at the ESA (PNC Arena). I wasn’t totally wrong, because I’m never wrong. Yes, I may have been slightly incorrect about the specific words the Mayor used in her announcement. But I have at least another 50 years to be proven wrong about Garth Brooks touring and playing in Raleigh. So expect a Garth Brooks concert in 2016.
I can’t blame Garth for not wanting to play the ESA (PNC Arena) though. After spending almost five years playing to a small and intimate audience in Las Vegas, it makes sense that Garth wants to start small. I have word from a reliable source that he wants to play the halftime show of the 2014 Broughton Homecoming game, or the ITB Bowl, which pits the worst local ACC football team against Broughton’s varsity team each year. I’ll keep you posted on the exact dates of those shows.
We all learned a lesson today, this is why you don’t announce announcements on Twitter. This isn’t a knock on Billy Joel, well, yes it is. He just isn’t Garth Brooks.