Billy Joel takes the prize this year!

Billy Joel to Receive Library of Congress Gershwin Prize 2014

Oh yeah!

This just in, folks. I’ll let someone else do the writing for a few minutes here

Rolling Stone’s Jon Blistein writes:

“Over his 50-year career, Joel has penned countless hits and racked up plenty of Grammy awards, honing his piano-playing skills and knack for melody and poignant storytelling along the way. “There is an intimacy to his songwriting that bridges the gap between the listener and the worlds he shares through music,” said Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. “When you listen to a Billy Joel song, you know about the people and the place and what happened there. And while there may be pain, despair and loss, there is ultimately a resilience to it that makes you want to go to these places again and again.”

Previous recipients of the Gershwin Prize include Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, songwriting duo Burt Bacharach and the late Hal David. Last year, Carole King became the first woman to receive the honor.”

Read all about it in official press release from Library of Congress here

Read More on Rolling Stone website here


The Evening with Carole King


Dear Friends,

Spent a wonderful evening in celebration of Carole King’s successful songwriting and performance career. Her daughter sang as well. The list of performers (of course Carole spoke, then sang) was hot!

Library of Congress Performance List

Performance List

I especially enjoyed the rendition by Louise Goffin of her mother’s song, after which she announced the finale entrance of Carole King’s speech and song, “not just a mentor, friend… but my mother!”

Colbie Caillat was breathy and charming…barefoot as she sang.

Patti Austin, well, there is nothing to explain. Just rocked the best Jazz and Blues complete with a scat duet with Arturo Sandoval on trumpet.

Michael Feinstein did the honors as M.C. again this year,  debonair flair as always.

Afterwards, a delicious dinner was served, and I had the pleasure to sit with Debbie and John Dingell, Dean of Congress, to my left, my cousins, Jonathan and Amanda Keidan, Guitarist from the show, Dean Parks and his wife, as well as others whose names I missed with the prevalence of echo surrounding us.

Representative John Dingell pleasantly gave me advice on what sights are worth seeing, and we chatted about the pleasures of backwoods life. He it seems was a park ranger for a time, and loves the mountains and nature.

Debbie was so sweet, and sat a seat further from me, so were only able to exchange a few phrases here and there, but it sounds like she has a fascinating life here.

Duty calls, must go on to the next. Will try to post some further story and photos later.

First Female Gershwin Prize Recipient

First Female Gershwin Prize Recipient, Carole King