Top Ten Greatest Billy Joel Albums

The Top Ten
1 The Stranger

Simply the BEST! Joel's popular radio hits (Piano Man, Tell Her About it, My Life, etc.) are what first got me listening just like most people, but this album is what pulled me into the rest of his music to become a legit FAN! "The Stranger" (song) hits home for many who question: intentions, love, identity! "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" in its 3 sections is a terrific sampler of all reasons to love his music (not to mention Joel's personal favorite)! And yes Virginia, "Only the Good Die Young" as well as "Movin' Out" more than qualify as Joel mainstays! But even just as a whole this one album rules all others!

Hard to choose between the Stranger & 52nd Street most of my favorites come from these two albums. On my top ten list of songs four are from the Stranger and four are from 52nd Street. I chose the Stranger because it was the first Billy Joel album I had. In my next group of ten favorites are more from the Stranger & 52nd Street as well as Glass Houses and River of Dreams. As many have said there's at least one song (usually more) from every album that I like to listen to.

An obvious first. The first six songs on the album (Movin' Out, The Stranger, Just the Way You Are, Scenes from an Italian Resteraunt, Vienna, Only the Good Die Young) are some of the most iconic rock songs of all time.

I Never get tired of listening to it all the way through all day long. Like Billy Joel's Own Version Of Abbey Road.

2 An Innocent Man

If you only had one album on a desert island - this is it!

One of the best pop albums ever. Six solid pop classics.

3 52nd Street

Rosalinda's Eyes and Until the Night are two of my favorites. My Life sounds like it's from An Innocent Man, and Honesty has a bit of a The Stranger style. Zanzibar and Stiletto are jusy so bloody fun

Even the non-hits are hidden gems. 52nd Street is the only weak track, but could have been great if it were just LONGER.

Great jazz album. My favorite songs are Rosalinda's Eyes, Zanzibar, Stiletto and Honesty...

The Stranger is best, but I should get this Billy's 2nd best album higher!

4 Turnstiles

Turnstiles is a masterpiece of a album; each song from start to finish details Billy Joel's departure from Los Angeles and his joyous return to failing New York City. Say Goodbye to Hollywood kicks things off, then Summer, Highland Falls details his time living in the small upstate NY village of Highland Falls, All You Wanna Do Is Dance is about someone not wanting to take the world and it's problems seriously and instead wanting to dance, and New York State of Mind is an epic ode to one of the greatest cities in the world. The B-side is just as excellent as the A-side; James describes a childhood friend struggling with all of the many things that family life brings, Prelude/Angry Young Man is a jamming piano-driven song that talks about a young immature man who wears his anger a little too much, I've Loved These Days is about growing up and leaving behind a unsustainable lifestyle, and Miami 2017 (Seen The Lights On Broadway) is a spectacular closer to the album with a almost ...more

Say Goodbye to Hollywood, New York State of Mind, Seen the Lights Go Out On Broadway, and Summer Highland Falls. All You Want to Do is Dance is the only clunker.

I think of this as Billy Joel's Revolver or Hunky Dory--somewhat overshadowed by the classic it preceded, but every bit as good.

Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out On Broadway) on the album is one of the most underappreciated songs of all time!

5 Piano Man

An amazing album, and definitely his best album. Billy joel literally became famous with this album. From up-beat songs like "Worst comes to worst", and "Ain't no crime", to Billy Joel classics like "The Ballad Of Billy The Kid", "Captain Jack", and of course, his greatest song of all time, "Piano Man". Billy Joel wrote this album when he was down on his luck, and working at a piano bar. He changed his career with this album. Deserves #1 spot for sure! A top three: Piano man, The Stranger, and 52nd Street.

6 Glass Houses

Although most people say The Stranger is their favourite, this one was actually his highest ranked back when it originally came out.

His rock album. Sleeping with the Television On should've been a huge hit. His best album of the 80's.

Think this album is the best?

You may be right

Best album of all time

7 The Nylon Curtain

My least favorite of his albums still has Allentown, Pressure and Goodnight Saigon.

8 River of Dreams

An amazing album with so many gems on it - No Man's Land, Two Thousand Years, Lullabye and the title track rank among his best songs in my humble opinion. So much more focused and captivating than the somewhat lukewarm 52nd Street. Probably what put many fans off was Joel's more hard rock attitude and sound but this is how I like him best.

Very underrated. The choice to put the 5 pessimistic songs on side 1, and 5 optimistic songs on side 2, is a stroke of sequencing genius.

His only album of the 90's. Some obvious standouts with a few subtly great tunes.

Definitely one of his better ones. The latter half of the album is of very strong songs but unseen

9 Storm Front

Billy Joel's loudest album. Probably greatly influenced by his trip to Red Russia. The loud songs are pretty good but it's ironic that most people believe the best song is the softest one

Often unfairly maligned by Billy Joel fans. It's a tremendous mix of rockers and ballads. I've never really understood why it isn't looked as one of Billy's strongest albums.

It has many of today's favorites, like we didn't start the fire.

We Didn't Start the Fire, The Downeaster Alexa, Leningrad, I Go to Extremes and And So It Goes. Great five-track punch.

10 The Bridge

The Bridge doesn't have the popular appeal of some other albums, but it might be the catchiest album, with underappreciated songs songs like "Code of Silence" and "Pressure", as well as "Getting Closer" and "Temptation". Pure greatness.

Underrated but great. Not his best but definitely not his worst.

This album for some reason is one of my favories. I cannot tell you why exactly, but I think it is an amazing LP

The Contenders
11 Streetlife Serenade least it has Souvenir and The Entertainer. Plus Streetlife Serenader also has some style

12 Songs in the Attic

This is my favourite live album ever. In fact it's one of my favourite albums full stop. The versions of these songs including ' She's got a way' are absolutely fantastic. A+

Best one so far. The only one id say might be better is the nylon curtain or piano man

Great live album.Showcases some overlooked gems and gives them their time to shine.

13 Cold Spring Harbor

I think this album gets way too much hate than it deserves, even by Billy Joel himself. Yes, it sounds a bit odd, but this album includes classics and fan favourites like "She's Got A Way" or "Everybody Loves You Now". Some other great songs are "You Can Make Me Free", "Why Judy Why", "You Look So Good To Me" or "Tomorrow Is Today", which he wrote off his own suicide note. The only mediocre song on this album is "Turn Around", but if you consider that "The Stranger"'s last two songs are pretty forgettable as well, this should be up there with "The Stranger" and "52nd Street". An almost perfect little album, that ought to not be overshadowed by "Piano Man", which is actually not as good in my opinion.

14 Collected Additional Masters
15 Fantasies & Delusions
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