Joel Splits With Drummer

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Grammy-winning star Billy Joel and his drummer LIBERTY DeVITTO have split after thirty years performing together - because DeVitto accused Joel of having a drinking problem.

The drummer, who has played at every one of the Piano Man's gigs since 1974, claims the problems started at the end of their last tour, when Joel refused to help him out in a time of financial crisis.

Asked why he didn't accompany the singer at his recent show at New York City's Madison Square Garden, Joel's spokesperson tells the New York Daily News, "Artistic differences."

However, DeVitto says, "I guess that's what they call it when you try to tell a friend the truth. I told him I was getting divorced, my ex-wife was getting everything, could he help me out? I helped him create hits, but I wasn't getting any royalties.

"The next day, he had the tour manager tell me, 'No way.'"

Joel then failed to invite DeVitto to his marriage to Kate Lee in 2004, at which point DeVitto approached him about his drinking problem.

He says, "I wrote him a letter, confronting him about his drinking and certain management issues. People said I discredited him. But then he went into rehab and proved me right.

"Billy has said no one is allowed to talk to me."


Tags: Billy Joel - Kate Lee

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crazy dazie's picture

crazy dazie

I think it is really sad to see this relationship of so many years go down the drain, or the drink as it may more aptly be said. Billy has been through wives and wine but has always been friends with Liberty. I remember him relating a story about the writing of "Honesty" and Liberty's singing sodomy in his headset so Billy had to come up with some lyrics and fast. They have collaborated for years.I hope that this so-called "artistic difference" can be ironed out and a long time friendship saved. Wives may come and go but friends are there when they set sail. As many of Billy's have. And let's face the the facts, I love Billy Joel, have since the beginning, and Billy loves his red, red, wine. There is more to this story than either of these kids are letting on.
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