Touro Law Review Issue Published Special Volume on Musician Billy Joel and the Law

June 8, 2016

Touro Law Review has published a special volume on legendary musician, Billy Joel and the Law, based on the national conference held at Touro Law Center. The articles, written by judges, lawyers, law professors and music scholars, examine the ways in which Billy Joel’s work relates to American law, society and culture. 

Billy Joel stated, “I am impressed by this comprehensive look at my work through the filter of influence on American law.”

The conference on Billy Joel and the Law was held at Touro Law Center in March 2015, and brought together scholars from across the country to closely examine Billy Joel’s songs and lyrics. Dean Patricia Salkin stated, “This issue of Touro Law Review showcases a wide-range of legal topics based on the work of Billy Joel. Examining the work of an artist in the light of the law is always an interesting exercise and the conference included not only scholarship, but also musical performances. It was a great conference and this is a great issue of the Law Review.” 

Professor Samuel Levine, who organized the conference, added: “This volume of the Touro Law Review reflects both the substance and the spirit of the conference, which included presentations by leading legal figures from across the United States and beyond.  On a local level, we are proud to be a Long Island law school, and we are pleased to have the opportunity to examine the law through the work of Billy Joel, one of the most well-known Long Islanders in the world.”

The Touro Law Review is a journal dedicated to the advancement of legal scholarship. Each issue addresses topics of practical and academic importance, containing articles authored by judges, law professors, attorneys, and students. The Review uses a rigorous and competitive process to select articles submitted for publication. Once selected for publication, each article undergoes an extensive editorial process designed to perfect its accuracy and clarity. Student editors and authors collaborate to contribute a reliable source of law to the legal community. 

This issue, which can be found online at includes the following articles:

Symposium: Billy Joel & the Law Foreword by Samuel J. Levine
Billy Joel: The minstrel testifies or how the Rules of Evidence Handcuff the Piano Man, by The Hon. Richard A. Dollinger
Goodnight Saigon: Billy Joe’s Musical Epitaph to the Vietnam War, by Morgan Jones
Behind the Nylon Curtain: Social Cohesion, Law and the Disaggregation of American Culture, by Rebecca Roiphe and Doni Gewirtzman
Scenes from the Copyright Office, by Brian L. Frye
Billy Joel: The Chronicler of the Suburbanization in New York, by Patricia E. Salkin and Irene Crisci
The Lawyer as Lover: Are Courts Romanticizing the Lawyer-Client Relationship?, by Bruce A. Green
Billy Joel and the Practice of Law: Melodies to Which a Lawyer Might Work, by Randy Lee 
The Downeaster Alexa: Iconic Male v. a Perfect Storm or Regulations, by Maureen A. Eggert
A Riff on Billy the Kid, by Richard H. Underwood

Those interested in obtaining issues of the Touro Law Review should email


Touro College Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center’s 185,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art law school is located adjacent to both a state and a federal courthouse in Central Islip, New York. Touro Law’s proximity to the courthouses, coupled with programming developed to integrate the courtroom into the classroom, provide a one-of-a kind learning model for law students, combining a rigorous curriculum taught by expert faculty with a practical courtroom experience. Touro Law, which has a student body of approximately 650 and an alumni base of more than 6,000, offers full- and part-time J.D. programs, several dual degree programs and graduate law programs for US and foreign law graduates. Touro Law Center is part of the Touro College system.

Touro Law’s newly implemented Portals to Practice is a cutting-edge, experiential learning program that reconceives and restructures the law school experience. Portals to Practice expands the scope and quality of legal education by focusing on the development of legal professionals, from pre-law through post-graduation. 

About the Touro College and University System 
Touro is a system of non-profit institutions of higher and professional education. Touro College was chartered in 1970 primarily to enrich the Jewish heritage, and to serve the larger American and global community. Approximately 18,000 students are currently enrolled in its various schools and divisions. Touro College has 29 branch campuses, locations and instructional sites in the New York area, as well as branch campuses and programs in Berlin, Jerusalem and Moscow. New York Medical College; Touro University California and its Nevada branch campus; Touro University Worldwide and its Touro College Los Angeles division; as well as Hebrew Theological College in Skokie, Ill. are separately accredited institutions within the Touro College and University System. For further information on Touro College, please go to:

About Billy Joel
Having sold 150 million records over the past quarter century, Billy Joel ranks as one of most popular recording artists and respected entertainers in history. The singer/songwriter/composer is the sixth best-selling recording artist of all time, the third best-selling solo artist and is one of the highest grossing touring artists in the world. In In December 2013, Billy Joel became Madison Square Garden’s first-ever music franchise, joining the ranks of the storied venue’s other original franchises – the New York Knicks, Rangers and Liberty. Since January 2014, Joel has played one show per month at The Garden as part of the Time Warner Cable Concert Series. This unprecedented and wildly successful residency has led to 36 sold-out shows through December 2016.  In November 2014, Billy Joel received both The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song which honors living musical artists’ lifetime achievement in promoting the genre of song as a vehicle of cultural understanding; entertaining and informing audiences; and inspiring new generations, and the once-in-a-century ASCAP Centennial Award, which is presented to American music icons in recognition of their incomparable accomplishments in their respective music genres and beyond.
In December 2013, Joel received The Kennedy Center Honors, one of the United States' top cultural awards. He is also the recipient of six GRAMMY® Awards, including the prestigious Grammy Legend Award. Joel has been inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and has received numerous industry awards including a TONY AWARD for "Movin' Out," a Broadway musical based on Joel’s music. 
For his accomplishments as a musician and as a humanitarian, the MusiCares Foundation and the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences honored Joel as the 2002 MusiCares Person Of The Year.  Joel has also performed alongside other music greats at two of Madison Square Garden’s most extraordinary benefit concerts – “12-12-12, The Concert For Sandy Relief,” which raised awareness and money for those affected by Hurricane Sandy and “The Concert for New York City,” which was held to help aid 9/11 victims and heroes.  
Billy Joel was honored by Steinway & Sons with a painted portrait that hangs in Steinway Hall in Manhattan. Joel, who has been a Steinway Artist for almost 20 years, is the first non-classical pianist to be immortalized in the Steinway Hall collection. His portrait hangs alongside those of legendary musicians including Sergei Rachmaninoff, Franz Liszt, Arthur Rubinstein, Ignacy Paderewski, and more.  The portrait of Billy Joel, painted by artist and musician Paul Wyse, is one of only two living artists to be inducted into the collection, the other being Leon Fleisher.  
In 2010, Joel released “The Last Play at Shea.”  The intersecting histories of a city, a team, and a music legend are examined in a documentary feature film that charts both the ups and downs of the New York Mets and the life and career of Long Island native Billy Joel, the last performer to play Shea Stadium before its demolition in 2008.  Billy Joel is a long-time supporter to his beloved hometown of Long Island, though he generally goes about things quietly, his actions still generate widespread impact. He joined Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, along with the North Oyster Bay Baymen's Association and Friends of the Bay, as well as town and county officials, for the 20th annual Oyster Bay Harbor Cleanup Day He also has raised millions for the East Hampton Baymen's Association, which has struggled with commercial fishing bans, and even wrote "The Downeaster 'Alexa' " about their plight.  Charity Begins at Home, Inc was first organized in 1978 and funded primarily by monies from concerts through the efforts of Billy Joel. For the past several years, other organizations such as motorcycle groups, Q104 Radio Station, recording studios and many public high schools have held events to raise funds for Charity Begins at Home, Inc. Joel has also supported the Long Island Music Hall of Fame and through 20th Century Cycles, his Motorcycle Gallery, has helped reshape downtown Oyster Bay. In 2013, Joel performed at The Paramount in Huntington, L.I. to benefit Long Island Cares, a charity founded by singer-songwriter Harry Chapin.

For more info contact:
Patti Desrochers
Director of Communications
(631) 761-7062

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