This rant against Billy Joel at Slate is officially credited to Ron Rosenbaum, but reads more like the transcript of a drunken barroom tirade. It’s so unhinged, you’d think that Billy Joel sadistically murdered the entire Rosenbaum clan while young Ron looked on helplessly. It also shifts tone abruptly and repeatedly, as though the only editing it received was a note reading, “We paid for 2,000 words but this is only 500. Maybe you could add a digression about Jeff Jarvis or an interlude in the form of an imagined dialogue with the reader?”
I find a rant against Billy Joel directed at anything other than his ticket prices or his driving record to be utterly ridiculous. No one ever said he was a genius. What he was and may still be as a performer and a songwriter is damn enjoyable, and that is all I (or anyone for that matter) should ask of an entertainer who wanted to be little more than that.
Great rebuttal, exactly the kind of witty writing Slate wishes they had, but now is directed toward them. I specifically looked up anything about that rant today,after the fact, because it was something that stuck in my mind when I didn’t have time to read it thoroughly a week ago or so, but it struck me so over the top crazy, as you so aptly described, that I was just curious what if anything happened since, …. I thought the piece was just written to get attention for some perverse reason when I saw it originally…. thanks again