By in Music

30-Day Song Challenge, Day 23 - A Song that You Want to Play at Your Wedding

“This Night” by Billy Joel, from the Innocent Man album, was “our song” when my husband and I were dating, so I always figured we would have that at our wedding. Well, times were kinda tight since my parents had just footed the bill for my college education, and I didn’t want them to have to shell out for a lavish wedding in addition. As a matter of fact, I bought the dress myself, and fortunately my niece, Jessica, a cheerful 9-year-old, didn’t mind wearing her same flower girl’s dress from my sister’s recent wedding.

Clearly, we weren’t going to be able to book a ballroom and a DJ for a dancing reception--we ended up with a very nice, albeit small, banquet room and one guy that sat in the corner playing background music on an electric keyboard--but I was heartened to find out that Billy Joel actually based the melody for the chorus of “This Night” on a classical piece by Beethoven! If we could figure out which composition it was and find sheet music for it, we might be able have the organist play it at the actual wedding.

Long story short, we didn’t, and she didn’t, but it’s not like my wedding was RUINED—life’s too short to be a Bridezilla, you know? But years later, I bought a boxed set of classical music, and there it was: Beethoven’s Sonata Pathétique. We’re still kind of cheap, but maybe we will shell out for a DJ--or classical pianist--for our 25th wedding anniversary!

Listen to "This Night"

Here's the last one, in case you missed it!

Day 22 – A song that you listen to when you’re sad

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scheng1 wrote on March 17, 2015, 9:39 AM

Next time when your friends or relatives are planning a wedding, ask them to invite the chorus and orchestra from the local schools. It will be fun and cheap.

AliCanary wrote on March 17, 2015, 9:51 AM

Oh, that's a great suggestion!

Ellis wrote on March 17, 2015, 10:03 AM

It's only the chorus that I recognized from Pathetique but nice song all the same..

AliCanary wrote on March 17, 2015, 10:33 AM

Yeah, I think that's the only part he lifted--erm, "was inspired by". The slow doo-wop at the beginning seems to borrow from "Goodnight, Sweetheart", but it's all good.

alexdg1 wrote on March 17, 2015, 12:57 PM

"An Innocent Man" was the first Billy Joel album I purchased; I'd been given "52nd Street" as a birthday present back in 1979 or '80, so that's the first Joel album I owned.

"This Night" is one of my fave tracks from this 1983 album.

AliCanary wrote on March 17, 2015, 1:39 PM

I purchased 52nd Street, The Stranger and Glass Houses on vinyl when I was in junior high and high school, and followed those up with An Innocent Man and The Bridge on CD when I was in college. I've been a Billy Joel fan since I was about 12 years old!

alexdg1 wrote on March 17, 2015, 1:45 PM

I "sorta" liked Billy Joel when I was 16, but I became a fan after hearing "Goodnight Saigon" from the Nylon Curtain album when I was 20. I owned "52nd Street" on eight track tape, then either bought or was given "An Innocent Man," "The Bridge," and "Greatest Hits, Volumes 1 and 2: 1973-1985" on audio cassettes. Everything else I have of his, including the classical piano album, is on CD.