Billy Joel swung by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, where Colbert, after momentarily regressing into a total fanboy, asked Joel to name his Top 5 Billy Joel songs. Joel has released 12 studio albums over a career that’s lasted decades, so there are a lot of songs to choose from. You might expect to hear such hits as “Piano Man,” “She’s Got A Way,” or “Uptown Girl,” but you’d be wrong. Joel said he prefers the lesser known songs, not the hits.
At No. 5, Joel picked “Vienna,” off his 1977 album The Stranger. The song also appeared in the 2004 Jennifer Garner hit movie 13 Going on 30.
“And So It Goes” was Joel’s pick at No. 4. The song appeared on Joel’s 1989 album, Storm Front, but was written by Joel years earlier about his doomed relationship with model Elle Macpherson.
For his third-favorite song, Joel finally chose one that a casual fan might actually know. “You May Be Right,” off his 1980 album Glass Houses, can still be heard on the radio today.
For his second-favorite song, Joel picked the ultra-obscure “She’s Right On Time” from his album The Nylon Curtain, released in 1982. The song may not have been a hit, but that didn’t stop them from shooting a video for it. The video is perfect for anyone suffering from that pesky early-’80s nostalgia.
And Billy Joel’s favorite Billy Joel song is “Scenes From an Italian Restaurant,” also from his The Stranger album.
Colbert might have a much more difficult time picking out his favorite Billy Joel song. During his aforementioned regression into a fanboy, Colbert sang lines from dozens of Joel’s songs in quick succession, proving his Billy Joel fandom.
Watch as Billy Joel kills the romance with Stories Behind the Hits on The Late Show: