Billy Joel

Singer, songwriter, pianist Billy Joel

William Martin "Billy" Joel is an American pianist, singer-songwriter, and composer. Since releasing his first hit song, "Piano Man", in 1973, Joel has become the sixth-best-selling recording artist and the third-best-selling solo artist in the United States, according to the RIAA. His compilation album Greatest Hits Vol. 1 & 2 is the third-best-selling album in the United States by discs shipped.
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Biography
Billy Joel's personal information overview.
News
News about Billy Joel from around the web
From the Archives: Billy Joel in concert at the Inglewood Forum
LATimes - 16 days
Here’s several archival images of 1980s Billy Joel concerts at the Forum in Inglewood. Joel, who wrote 33 Top 40 hits, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999. Following a Dec. 14, 1982, Joel concert, staff writer Dennis Hunt reported in the Dec. 16, 1982, Los Angeles Times: Pop...
Article Link:
 LATimes article
Billy Joel and Christie Brinkley's daughter Alexa Ray is engaged
ABC News - about 2 months
See the sweet announcement.
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 ABC News article
Billy Joel becomes a father again at 68
ABC News - 4 months
This is the singer's second child with his wife, Alexis Roderick.
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 ABC News article
Billy Joel, 68, and wife Alexis Roderick are expecting a baby
Yahoo News - 4 months
Billy Joel will soon have three Uptown Girls to worry about!
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 Yahoo News article
Billy Joel Gets Cheeky About Amy Schumer & Jennifer Lawrence Dancing On His Piano
Huffington Post - 6 months
We've been wondering how he felt for the longest time.
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 Huffington Post article
Billy Joel wears yellow Star of David during concert
ABC News - 6 months
The Piano Man's daughter and ex-wife posted in support of his silent protest.
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 ABC News article
‘The audience gasped when Princess Diana appeared’
Guardian (UK) - 8 months
Wayne Sleep remembers a remarkable dance duet at the Royal Opera House in December 1985 Our paths first crossed when she approached me for dance lessons in the early 1980s. Diana loved ballet, but she also wanted to learn jazz, tap and contemporary. Sadly, I couldn’t teach her, because I was away on tour so much. But she approached me again when she wanted to perform at the Royal Opera House – it was a private show for supporters and friends of the Royal Ballet. Charles was going to be in the audience and she wanted to surprise him; it was all top secret. We met in a rehearsal studio in west London. She was in leg-warmers and a leotard. My first thought was, she’s too tall to dance with me, I’ll be a laughing stock: I’m 5ft 2in and she’s 5ft 11in. But I soon realised she had a good sense of humour, and that we could have some fun with our height difference. She’d already decided on the music: Billy Joel’s Uptown Girl. Continue reading...
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 Guardian (UK) article
Billy Joel's former drummer Liberty DeVitto details messy split from 'Piano Man,' dispels rumors about rock lifestyle
Fox News - 8 months
Liberty DeVitto played in Billy Joel’s band for 30 years and can be heard on some of Joel’s best-known hits such as “Only the Good Die Young” and “Just the Way You Are,” but Joel unceremoniously cut DeVitto from his band without an explanation. His story is told in "Hired Gun," which hits select theaters Thursday.
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 Fox News article
WATCH: Billy Joel delivers commencement address at his Long Island High School
ABC News - 8 months
ABC News' Adrienne Bankert reports the buzziest stories of the day in "GMA" Pop News.
Article Link:
 ABC News article
Billy Joel returning to NY hometown to speak at graduation
Fox News - 8 months
Fifty years after he finished short by one English class credit from graduating high school, Billy Joel is returning to his Long Island hometown to speak at this weekend's commencement ceremony.
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 Fox News article
Musician to the Stars, Ozzie Melendez, Finally Takes Center Stage
Huffington Post - 9 months
Ozzie Melendez's bags are packed. On this afternoon, Melendez admits he’s feeling a bit stressed. He has a long to-do list he must check off before his flight in the morning. For the next month he will be touring Costa Rica and Mexico with Marc Anthony, the best-selling salsa artist of all time. Melendez is familiar with this pace. For over three decades he has been traveling the world playing trombone for some the biggest stars of all time. During one week this past April, Melendez had to prepare for three gigs with three very different artists. First, he was in Connecticut with Bernie Williams, the former Major League Baseball player turned Latin jazz musician. Two days later he shared the stage with the legendary Diana Ross for three nights in New York City. He wrapped the week with Marc Anthony in South America. When Melendez is on stage looking at the sold-out audiences, he says there are times he is overwhelmed. "It's something I've always dreamed about as a kid...
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 Huffington Post article
Billy Joel plays some memories at Dodger Stadium with surprise guests Pink and Axl Rose
LATimes - 10 months
Billy Joel has spoken freely of a time in his performing career when he was bored playing live, phoning it in onstage while contemplating what might be on the room service menu later. Saturday’s epic and electric show at Dodger Stadium​​ was not one of those nights. Before an all-ages crowd that...
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 LATimes article
Chris Pine Tries To Settle 'Hollywood Chris' Debate Once And For All
Huffington Post - 10 months
Unless you’re a really dedicated fan of the Chrises in Hollywood, you have to admit it’s hard to keep them all straight.  There’s Captain America, Chris Evans; Thor, Chris Hemsworth; Star-Lord, Chris Pratt; and Captain Kirk/Steve Trevor, Chris Pine.  Got that? No? OK. Well, let Chris Pine help you out.  During his opening monologue on “Saturday Night Live” this weekend, Pine performed a musical number set to Billy Joel’s “Uptown Girl” in hopes of helping viewers finally figure out which superhero Chris he is. Pine sang, “I’m not that Chris / I look just like him, but I’m not that Chris / Not Pratt or Hemsworth / I’m a different guy / Not Evans either / I’m my own cool vibe.” (Nope, he’s not Ryan Reynolds, either.)  Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon made cameos in the bit to keep the joke going before Pine finally belted out, “I’mmmmmmm Chris Pine!”  Watch the full segment above. -- This feed and its c...
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 Huffington Post article
On the road with Billy Joel: The Piano Man talks Trump, L.A. — and new music?
LATimes - 10 months
Ahead of his May 13 concert at Dodger Stadium, the veteran rock superstar sat for an interview with The Times' Mikael Wood.
Article Link:
 LATimes article
How Sting, Springsteen and Billy Joel saved America
CNN - 10 months
Some songs have so helped define history that they have become anthems, because they speak universal truths to all of us. This is what I witnessed happening after 9/11.
Article Link:
 CNN article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Billy Joel
    FORTIES
  • 2015
    On August 4, 2015 Joel played the final concert at Nassau Coliseum before the arena underwent a $261 million renovation.
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    On August 12, 2015, the couple's daughter, Della Rose Joel, was born.
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    On July 4, 2015, Joel married his fourth wife, Alexis Roderick (aged 33 at the time), an equestrian and former Morgan Stanley executive, at his estate on Long Island with the Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, presiding over the ceremony.
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    In 2015, Joel performed 21 concerts (in addition to his Madison Square Garden residency) from January 7 to August 2 in various cities around the U.S. and Canada.
  • 2014
    He received the prize at a performance ceremony in November 2014 from James H. Billington, the Librarian of Congress, and Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
    On July 22, 2014, the Library of Congress announced that Joel would be the sixth recipient of the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
    Joel's mother, Rosalind Nyman Joel, died on July 13, 2014, at the age of 92.
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    In January 2014, Joel appeared as himself in Adam Scott's Adult Swim series: The Greatest Event in Television History, singing his song "My Life" for a recreation of the opening theme to Bosom Buddies.
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    In 2014, Schruers did release a Billy Joel biography, simply titled Billy Joel, based on extensive personal interviews with Joel.
    Joel kicked off the 2014 New Year in the Amway Center and performed several cover songs such as Elton John's "Your Song", Billy Preston's "You Are So Beautiful" (in tribute to Joe Cocker), The Beatles "With a Little Help from My Friends", "Can't Buy Me Love", and "When I'm 64", Robert Burns' "Auld Lang Syne", and AC/DC's "You Shook Me All Night Long" (with Brian Johnson).
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    On January 7, 2014, the Billy Joel in Concert tour began.
  • 2013
    In 2013 Joel described being in depression since the 9/11 attacks.
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    On December 3, 2013, it was announced that Joel would become a franchise of Madison Square Garden, playing one concert a month indefinitely, starting with a date on January 27, 2014.
    In May 2013, it was announced that Joel would hold his first ever indoor Irish concert at the O2 in Dublin on November 1.
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  • 2012
    On December 12, 2012, Joel performed as part of 12-12-12: The Concert for Sandy Relief at Madison Square Garden, a concert held for all the victims of Hurricane Sandy.
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    In 2012, Joel signed an exclusive worldwide publishing agreement with Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG), and its subsidiary Rondor Music International.
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  • 2011
    2011 marked the 40th anniversary of the release of Joel's first album, Cold Spring Harbor.
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  • 2010
    In April 2010, it was announced that Joel and DeVitto amicably resolved the lawsuit.
  • THIRTIES
  • 2009
    On May 19, 2009, Joel's former drummer, Liberty DeVitto, filed a lawsuit in NYC claiming Joel and Sony Music owed DeVitto over 10 years of royalty payments.
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  • 2008
    Although Joel has donated money to Democratic candidates running for office, he has never publicly affiliated himself with the Democratic Party. Although he is not known for publicly endorsing political candidates, he did play a benefit with Bruce Springsteen to raise money for Barack Obama's presidential campaign in 2008.
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    Joel sang the song throughout his December 2008 tour of Australia.
    On December 11, 2008, Joel recorded his own rendition of "Christmas in Fallujah" during a concert at Acer Arena in Sydney and released it as a live single in Australia only.
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    On July 16, 2008, and July 18, 2008, Joel played the final concerts at Shea Stadium before its demolition.
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    On June 19, 2008, he played a concert at the grand re-opening of Caesars Windsor (formerly Casino Windsor) in Windsor, Ontario, Canada to an invite-only crowd for Casino VIPs.
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    Joel's staying power as a touring act continues to the present day. He sold out 10 concerts at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut from May to July 2008.
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    On March 10, 2008, Joel inducted his friend John Mellencamp into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in a ceremony at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City.
    On January 26, 2008, Joel performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra celebrating the 151st anniversary of the Academy of Music.
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  • 2007
    Joel wrote it in September 2007 after reading numerous letters sent to him from American soldiers in Iraq. "Christmas in Fallujah" is only the second pop/rock song released by Joel since 1993's River of Dreams.
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    On December 1, 2007, Joel premiered his new song "Christmas in Fallujah".
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    On February 4, Joel sang the national anthem for Super Bowl XLI, becoming the first to sing the national anthem twice at a Super Bowl. and on April 17, 2007, Joel was honored in Albany, New York, for his ninth concert at the Times Union Center.
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    The song, titled "All My Life", was Joel's newest single (with second track "You're My Home", live from Madison Square Garden 2006 tour) and was released into stores on February 27, 2007.
  • 2006
    Joel toured South Africa, Australia, Japan, and Hawaii in late 2006, and subsequently toured the Southeastern U.S. in February and March 2007 before hitting the Midwest in the spring of 2007.
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    On July 31, 2006, he performed a free concert in Rome, with the Colosseum as the backdrop.
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    Joel visited the United Kingdom and Ireland for the first time in many years as part of the European leg of his 2006 tour.
    On January 7, 2006, Joel began a tour across the U.S. Having not written, or at least released, any new songs in 13 years, he featured a sampling of songs from throughout his career, including major hits as well as obscure tunes like "Zanzibar" and "All for Leyna".
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  • 2004
    On October 2, 2004, Joel married his third wife Katie Lee, aged 23 at the time.
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  • 2003
    In 2003, Joel inducted The Righteous Brothers into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, noting that his song "Until the Night" from the album 52nd Street was a tribute to the duo.
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  • 2002
    Joel was also named MusiCares Person of the Year for 2002, an award given each year at the same time as the Grammy Awards.
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  • 2001
    Joel performed "New York State of Mind" live on September 21, 2001, as part of the America: A Tribute to Heroes benefit concert, and on October 20, 2001, along with "Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)", at the Concert for New York City in Madison Square Garden.
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    In 2001, Joel released Fantasies & Delusions, a collection of classical piano pieces.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1999
    On December 31, 1999, Joel performed at New York's Madison Square Garden.
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    To add onto his achievements Joel was inducted into the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame in 1999.
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  • 1997
    Joel performed with Brooks during his Central Park concert in 1997.
    1997's "To Make You Feel My Love" and "Hey Girl" both charted from Joel's Greatest Hits Volume III album.
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  • 1994
    Joel and Brinkley divorced on August 25, 1994.
    On August 25, 1994, Joel and second wife Christie Brinkley divorced, but they remained friends.
    Beginning in 1994, Joel toured extensively with Elton John on a series of "Face to Face" tours, making them the longest running and most successful concert tandem in pop music history.
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  • 1993
    The eponymous first single was the last top 10 hit Joel has penned to date, reaching No. 3 on Billboards Hot 100 chart and ranking at No. 21 on the 1993 year-end Hot 100 chart.
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    That year, Joel also started work on River of Dreams, finishing the album in early 1993.
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  • 1992
    In 1992, Joel inducted the R&B duo Sam & Dave into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
    In the summer of 1992, Joel filed another $90 million lawsuit against his former lawyer Allen Grubman, alleging a wide range of offenses including fraud, breach of fiduciary responsibility, malpractice and breach of contract but the case was eventually settled out of court for an undisclosed sum.
    In 1992, he submitted essays to the school board and was awarded his diploma at Hicksville High's annual-graduation ceremony, 25 years after leaving.
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  • TEENAGE
  • 1989
    The first single for the album, "We Didn't Start the Fire", was released in September 1989 and it became Joel's third and – to date – most-recent US number-one hit, spending two weeks at the top.
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    The release of the album Storm Front coincided with major changes in Joel's career and inaugurated a period of serious upheaval in his business affairs. In August 1989, just before the album was released, Joel dismissed his manager (and former brother-in-law) Frank Weber after an audit revealed major discrepancies in Weber's accounting.
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  • 1987
    Joel, his family (including young daughter Alexa), and his full touring band made the trip in August 1987.
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  • 1986
    In October 1986, Joel and his handlers started planning a trip to the Soviet Union.
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  • 1985
    Joel married his second wife, Christie Brinkley, aged 31 at the time, in March 1985.
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    Joel participated in the USA For Africa We Are The World project in 1985, capping off a series of successful singles.
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  • 1983
    Joel's next album moved away from the serious themes of The Nylon Curtain and struck a much lighter tone. The album An Innocent Man was Joel's tribute to R&B and doo wop music of the 1950s and 1960s and resulted in Joel's second Billboard number-one hit, "Tell Her About It", which was the first single off the album in the summer of 1983.
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  • 1982
    From one of the final shows of the tour, Joel made his first video special, Live from Long Island, which was recorded at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York on December 30, 1982.
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    In 1982, he embarked on a brief tour in support of the album.
    However, production was temporarily delayed when Joel was involved in a serious motorcycle accident on Long Island on April 15, 1982, severely injuring his hands.
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  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1979
    In 1979, Joel also traveled to Havana, Cuba, to participate in the historic Havana Jam festival that took place between March 2–4, alongside Rita Coolidge, Kris Kristofferson, Stephen Stills, the CBS Jazz All-Stars, the Trio of Doom, Fania All-Stars, Billy Swan, Bonnie Bramlett, Mike Finnegan, Weather Report, and an array of Cuban artists such as Irakere, Pacho Alonso, Tata Güines and Orquesta Aragón.
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  • 1978
    Expectations were high for Joel's next album, 52nd Street, which he released in 1978, naming it after Manhattan's famous 52nd Street, which, at the time of its release, served as the world headquarters of CBS/ Columbia.
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  • 1976
    Disenchanted with Los Angeles, Joel returned to New York City in 1976 and recorded Turnstiles, the first album he recorded with the group of hand-picked musicians who became the Billy Joel Band.
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  • 1975
    In late 1975, he played piano and organ on several tracks on Bo Diddley's The 20th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll all-star album.
  • 1974
    Joel's songwriting began attracting more attention; in 1974 Helen Reddy recorded "You're My Home" (Piano Man).
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  • 1973
    Weber and Joel married in 1973, and she became his manager. His song "She's Always a Woman" was inspired by her. She was also the inspiration for the waitress character in "Piano Man". They divorced on July 20, 1982.
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    Joel's first album with Columbia was Piano Man, released in 1973.
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  • 1972
    Joel signed a recording contract with Columbia in 1972 and moved to Los Angeles; he lived there for the next three years.
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  • 1971
    Joel began his Cold Spring Harbor tour in the fall of 1971, touring with his band (Rhys Clark on drums, Al Hertzberg on guitar, and Larry Russell on bass guitar) throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico, opening for groups such as the J. Geils Band, The Beach Boys, and Taj Mahal.
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  • 1969
    Joel and drummer Jon Small left the Hassles in 1969 to form the duo Attila, releasing an eponymous debut album in July 1970.
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  • OTHER
  • 1967
    Joel left the band in 1967 to join the Hassles, a Long Island group that had signed with United Artists Records.
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  • 1964
    Joel states that in 1964 he played on a recording of the Shangri-Las' "Remember (Walking in the Sand)" but he is unaware of whether he played on the demo or master version; The released single included a co-producer credit for Artie Ripp, who later was the first to sign and produce Joel as a solo artist after Michael Lang, who had given Joel a monetary advance, passed Joel along to Ripp to focus his attentions elsewhere instead.
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  • 1957
    Rosalind and Howard Joel divorced in 1957.
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  • 1949
    William Martin Joel was born in the Bronx on May 9, 1949, and was raised in a Levitt house in a section of Levittown, New York that was located in the town of Oyster Bay.
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Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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