Sunday night finds me on YouTube, listening once again to Billy Joel’s snotty “Los Angelenos.”
It’s one of the few BJ tunes I didn’t hear growing up, since my parents’ near-complete Joel collection did not include either of the albums on which it appears (1974’s Streetlife Serenade and 1981’s live Songs From The Attic.)
If I had to listen to any one of BJ’s musical takedowns, I’d probably choose this one. It’s wicked catchy, especially the bridge (“Hiding up in the mountains / Laying low in the canyons / Going nowhere on the streets with the Spanish names.”) And who doesn’t enjoy a shot at shallow, narcissistic southern Californians?
I went into the ARSA database of local radio-play charts to see if the song — not released as a single — had hooked any programming directors the way it hooked me.
And sure enough, there’s one chart from 40 years ago this month, listing “Los Angelenos” as an up-and-coming airplay hit …
Apparently, no one enjoys a shot at shallow, narcissistic southern Californians more than their northern neighbors.
I knew I liked San Francisco.