Billy Joel: Live at Yankee Stadium VHS 1990 Storm Front Tour Downeaster Alexa


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Billy Joel – Live At Yankee Stadium [VHS]
Billy Joel (Actor), David Brown (Actor), Jon Small (Director, Producer) Rated: NR (Not Rated) Format: VHS Tape

Bill Joel’s triumphant performance at New York’s Yankee Stadium was filmed and released first on VHS and then later on DVD. The show was supposedly the first rock concert at the “house that Ruth built,” and was recorded over two nights in June of 1990. Songs include “Storm Front,” “I Go to Extremes,” “Scenes From an Italian Restaurant,” “New York State of Mind,” “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” and, of course, “Piano Man.” The 85-minute video includes a six-minute build-up to the show.

1 Storm Front
2 I Go To Extremes
3 Scenes From An Italian Restaurant
4 The Downeaster ‘Alexa’
5 Pressure
6 New York State Of Mind
7 We Didn’t Start The Fire
8 Shout
9 That’s Not Her Style
10 Miami 2017
11 A Matter Of Trust
12 Piano Man
13 And So It Goes

Film Producer, Film Director – Jon Small
Written-By – Billy Joel (tracks: 1 to 7, 9 to 13)
Recorded on June 22 & 23 1990 during the “Storm Front” Tour.
Running Time: 85 Mins.

Having been present for Billy Joel’s Yankee Stadium concert, I obtained the video more as a momento. Little did I realize that Billy’s exhuberance and vitality would be transformed onto the small screen. Great camerawork make watching this unbelievable concert lifelike (even on a TV). Although nothing beats seeing Billy Joel in concert, this video ranks a close second.

Billy Joel seems incapable of putting on anything but a stunning concert. He is a master of the form, and for nearly 30 years he consistently has sold out any venue he has chosen to play. Still, it was a remarkable feat to sell out Yankee Stadium, not once, but twice. A native New Yorker (and avid baseball fan), Joel was the first pop/rock performer allowed to play “The House That Ruth Built,” and on the first two nights of summer in 1991, he brought the house down.

“Billy Joel: Live at Yankee Stadium” arguably is the singer/songwriter’s finest concert video. The cinematography and editing are impressive, giving the feel at times of a theatrical release rather than a television special. Skillful editing effectively captures the interplay among Joel, his band, and the enthusiastic fans who crowd the tiered stage. The sound is fine on VHS.

But, as always, the power of a Billy Joel concert is in the music, and The Piano Man takes the field in Yankee Stadium as a true triple threat: songwriter, singer, and musician. It’s difficult not to be a bit disappointed knowing that the 85-minute video represents little more than half the actual concert. But while most fans are likely to have at least two or three favorite songs that didn’t make the cut, the 12-song play list is solid, with a half-dozen Billy Joel classics logically chosen from a very lengthy list.

A stop on the “Storm Front” tour, the concert opens with two numbers from that album — the title song, followed by a rousing rendition of one of the album’s best, “I Go to Extremes.” The first “classic” on the video is a perennial crowd favorite, “Scenes From an Italian Restaurant,” after which Joel trades the piano for an accordian to perform another “Storm Front” cut, “The Downeaster Alexa,” accompanied by a haunting violin.

An energetic rendition of “Pressure” is followed by a hometown crowd-pleaser, “New York State of Mind,” and a new song that would become a classic in its own right: “We Didn’t Start the Fire.” Joel closes the main part of the show on the lower tier of the stage with a blues harmonica and “That’s Not Her Style.”

Joel opens the encore with another New York special, an apocalyptic 1976 number he rarely plays in concert anymore, “Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway).” He follows with “A Matter of Trust” and the finale, “Piano Man,” which has evolved into the audience’s tribute to Joel. He doesn’t even bother to try singing the chorus anymore. The audience takes care of that.

“Live at Yankee Stadium” is an important concert video. Since “Storm Front,” Joel has released only one album of original music, “River of Dreams,” and no subsequent concert video has matched the energy of that captured in Yankee Stadium. Given Joel’s stated plans to eliminate lengthy tours and to limit concerts, it’s unlikely we’ll see another video of this quality. It’s very good work, and it has a place in the collection of any Billy Joel fan.


Case slightly worn. VHS itself is near mint…a few spots on label. Tape is completely rewinded for your convenience.