Billy Joel Peter Reilly - Essay

Peter Reilly

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Blue-collar, lower-middle-class sociology found its seminal literary expression in Hubert Selby's Last Exit to Brooklyn almost two decades ago. The book's influence on a whole generation of creative talent is probably most clearly demonstrated in the work of three current superstars of the entertainment media: Martin Scorsese in films (Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, and New York, New York), Richard Price in fiction (The Wanderers and Bloodbrothers), and Billy Joel in pop music ("The Stranger" and his latest … album, "52nd Street").

Selby's book is a brutal, jarring, nightmarish cityscape littered with the contemporary equivalents of figures from an Hieronymous Bosch...

(The entire section is 652 words.)