Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Tampa mayor goes overboard for Billy Joel

   The press release arrived by email Tuesday afternoon. At 2 p.m. Wednesday, it said, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn would hold a press conference at the Tampa Bay Times Forum to make a "major concert announcement."
   It instantly became fodder for newsroom and social media speculation. Who could it possibly be?
   Paul Simon and Sting had just announced a joint tour and the last date was in Orlando. Maybe a Tampa show had been added. Was that big enough for this kind of announcement?
Billy Joel
   Paul McCartney? The Rolling Stones? Bruce Sprinsgsteen? Neil Young? They had all been here before, with no mayoral pronouncements preceding their appearances.
   What about some weird thing with, like, the remaining members of the Who and Nirvana?
   Who in the world was a big enough star that the mayor would announce the concert?
   Maybe some feuding major rappers appearing together for the first time?
   Whoever it is, it had to be someone massive, a mega-star of unrivaled renown.
   Early Wednesday afternoon, a non-mayoral announcement came out that Miley Cyrus had added another show at the Forum. She's bringing her Bangerz Tour to the Tampa Bay Times Forum on March 20. (She's also headlining the 93.3-FLZ Jingle Ball at the same venue on Dec. 18.)
   Could that be that be what had hizzoner so enthused?
   Then just after 2 p.m., we got the official word: Billy Joel is coming to the Tampa Bay Times Forum on Jan. 17.
   Billy Joel's okay and all. Sure, back in the day he made the worst videos this side of Hall and Oates, but he wrote some good songs and had some big hits in the 1970s. He married Christie Brinkley and let all us goofy-looking guys believe that we might have a shot with supermodels.
   But seriously -- that's a "major concert announcement" worthy of the mayor of a mid-sized American city? That's what music fans all over west central Florida have been buzzing about for the past 24 hours? Billy Joel just played in St. Petersburg last year!
   It wasn't half as exciting as anyone was guessing, and most people thought their guesses didn't have the star-power to merit such hype. In fact, the emailed Miley Cyrus announcement earlier in the day was every bit as big a deal as the mayor's thing about Billy Joel.
   Oh, well. At least we don't have to wonder anymore.


Clare Ward-Jenkins said...

Overboard is right. Doesn't this guy have better things to do?

Jason0x21 said...

The announcement went down exactly the same way in Raleigh, NC, so it seems like some sort of bizarre contract rider.