EP 111 – Evolution Of A Song – ”The Entertainer”

The beauty of live music is that a song never sounds the same twice. Billy Joel’s no exception to this rule. And, with some songs nearly 50 years old by now, many of his older numbers have seen drastic changes over the years.

In the first installment of our Evolution of a Song series, we tracked how “Say Goodbye to Hollywood” and “Everybody Loves You Now” changed from their first appearances to their most recent.

This time, we’re reaching far back into the catalog with “The Entertainer.” This was an early concert staple that got shelved for years before becoming a standard again over the last decade.

What’s also notable about this song is that the version on the Streetlife Serenade album couldn’t be replicated live. It features more and more instruments, from synthesizers to banjos, layering onto the recording with every verse.

This episode starts with a barebones live recording that predates the official recording. Then, we’ll track the song through numerous lineup changes and shows at bigger and bigger venues. Finally, we’ll finish with a performance from 2023.

Join us, as we dig deep into the evolution of “The Entertainer.”

THE ENTERTAINER – Evolution of a Song Playlist


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Produced by Michael Grosvenor & Jack Firneno for Glass Houses Media, LLC

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