“While he claims a secular Long Island upbringing (and has songs full of Catholic and Italian imagery), Billy Joel remains one of the great Jews of musical scripture — here’s his ultimate ode to a true Macher: ‘Big Shot!'” Grohl wrote via Foo Fighters‘ Twitter account, linking to a video of the performance.
Grohl handles drums and vocals as per usual, while Kurstin tackles Joel’s fervent piano parts and plays the song’s biting guitar licks on xylophone. And, lest anybody accuse the duo of being too formal, they both break out kazoos for the “whoa-oh-oh” break.
Grohl and Kurstin are now in their second year of the Hanukkah Sessions, in which they pay tribute to a Jewish artist on each night of the holiday. The 2020 slate included tributes to Bob Dylan, the Velvet Underground and Beastie Boys.
This year’s series has featured a metal version of Lisa Loeb’s “Stay (I Missed You),” a faithful cover of the Ramones’ “Blitzkrieg Bop,” a glitzy lounge-act rendition of Barry Manilow’s “Copacabana” a keytar-assisted rendition of Van Halen’s “Jump” and a cover of Amy Winehouse‘s “Take the Box” featuring Grohl’s 15-year-old daughter Violet on vocals.
Billy Joel Albums Ranked
From ‘Cold Spring Harbor’ to ‘River of Dreams,’ we run through the Piano Man’s LPs from worst to best.