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Billy Joel Rules Out Touring Again

Billy Joel
Larry Busacca, Getty Images

Despite a killer performance at the recent 12-12-12 concert at Madison Square Garden and an upcoming headlining slot at JazzFest, Billy Joel will not be mounting a tour any time soon. In a new interview, he disclosed that recent health issues have stopped him from a return to the stage.

“I had to get hip replacements in both hips,” he says in the new issue of Rolling Stone. “And now slowly but surely I’m kinda getting back to normal. I’d say I’m 85 percent. I can walk OK. I can’t run like I used to.”

The 63-year old Joel also acknowledges — quite refreshingly for a rocker of his generation — that the natural changes that come with middle age mean that he can no longer perform in the manner to which he and his many fans are accustomed. “Honestly, I’m not as good as I used to be,” he continues. “I’m not as athletic as I used to be. I don’t jump off the piano anymmore – that didn’t help my hips, either. My voice has changed. It’s lowered.”

Although Joel hasn’t released a rock album since 1993’s ‘River of Dreams,’ the classically trained pianist still regularly composes instrumental music for his own enjoyment, without any desire to record it. And even with famous friends like Bruce Springsteen and Pete Townshend wanting him to get back to songwriting, Joel hasn’t felt the necessary motivation to go back to putting so much of his life into his work.

“I like to say I broke up with me,” he adds. “The singer broke up with the songwriter and the performer didn’t want to work with the piano player anymore.”

Next: Top Five Billy Joel Cover Songs

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