Legendary recording artist Billy Joel will continue his long-standing tradition of performing in ballparks with a concert at Petco Park, home of the Padres, in San Diego this spring.The show on May 14 will be Joel's only performance in California in 2016."This is a great honor for the Padres and
Legendary recording artist Billy Joel will continue his long-standing tradition of performing in ballparks with a concert at Petco Park, home of the Padres, in San Diego this spring.
The show on May 14 will be Joel's only performance in California in 2016.
"This is a great honor for the Padres and for the city of San Diego to welcome Billy Joel here," said Padres president Mike Dee, who recalled the first time he saw Joel in concert at the Capital Centre in Landover, Md., in 1978. "On the heels of having Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones and Taylor Swift in just 16 months in San Diego, to add Billy Joel to that list is an honor for us. It further establishes San Diego as a place where artists of this stature now want to come."
Dee also acknowledged what the concert would mean for the local community.
"These are big events, not just for us and for Petco Park but for the city of San Diego," Dee said. "The city is on fire when we have concerts of this magnitude here. The businesses down here benefit, the hotels, the local economy. This will be a regional draw because it will be the only concert Billy will be doing in the state of California."
Tickets, ranging in price from $53.75 to $133.75, will be available for purchase by the public beginning Jan. 22 at 10 a.m. PT online at www.padres.com/billyjoel and at the Petco Park box office.
American Express card members can purchase tickets before the general public from Jan. 18 at 10 a.m. PT through Jan. 21 at 10 p.m. PT.
In June of 1990, Joel's Storm Front tour played Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York, where he grew up. Joel also famously "closed down" Shea Stadium in 2008, playing two sold-out concerts in July to commemorate the Mets' final season in that ballpark. The concerts were featured in a 2010 documentary, "The Last Play at Shea," and included guest appearances by Tony Bennett, Don Henley, John Mayer, John Mellencamp, Steven Tyler, Roger Daltrey, Garth Brooks and McCartney.
In 2014, Joel played to capacity crowds at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Wrigley Field in Chicago and Fenway Park in Boston. Last summer, he again visited Fenway Park, Citizens Bank Park and Wrigley Field and added a show at AT&T Park in San Francisco.
Joel also sang the national anthem at Citi Field prior to Game 3 of the 2015 World Series between the Mets and Kansas City Royals.
"I still get psyched when I'm going to a professional ballgame, whether I'm singing or not," Joel said. "I'm honored they ask me to do these things, the national anthem, playing at the Garden all the time. I've had an incredible life. I'm not ready to leave, yet, though."
Joel's first Mets anthem performance occurred in 1986, when he had just released his album "The Bridge." In 2000, his performance at Yankee Stadium prior to Game 1 of the Subway Series between the Yankees and Mets concluded with a bald eagle flying in from center field.
In December 2013, Joel became Madison Square Garden's first music franchise, joining the venue's other original franchises, the New York Knicks, Rangers and Liberty. Since January 2014, Joel has played one show per month at The Garden, with 30 sold-out shows through June 2016.
Joel, the sixth best-selling recording artist of all time and the third best-selling solo artist, has sold 150 million records over the last quarter century and is one of the highest-grossing touring artists in the world.
His career has spanned five decades, during which he has won six Grammy Awards and has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame (1992), the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1999) and the Long Island Music Hall of Fame (2006). In 2013, Joel received the Kennedy Center Honors, the nation's highest honor for influencing American culture through the arts.
In 2014, Joel received both The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, which honors living musical artists' lifetime achievement in promoting the genre of song as a vehicle of cultural understanding, and the ASCAP Centennial Award, presented to American music icons in recognition of their accomplishments in their music genres and beyond.
Lindsay Berra is a reporter for MLB.com.