This blog post is dedicated to the 'stranger' we all hold inside ourselves
We all have a face
That we all hide away forever
And we take them out and show ourselves
When everyone has gone
Some are satin some are steel
Some are silk some are leather
They're the face of a stranger
I've written about Billy Joel in so many previous blog posts - let's be honest, I just love the guy. The thing I love most about the introduction of this particular track is that it has no connection to the first verse, especially when the lyrics kick in. The piano introduction gives us the main melodic motif that is then mirrored by the whistler. I imagine that the whistler is the stranger, acting like the Pied Piper of Hamlin, playing his hypnotic melody that you follow because well, you can't really help yourself can you. . .
But we love to try them on
Well, we all fall in love
But we disregard the danger
Though we share so many secrets
There are some we never tell
Why were you so surprised
That you never saw the stranger
Did you ever let your love
See the stranger in yourself?
We try on these different faces because well. . . situations arise that force or may encourage you to try those different faces. You change the way you look (sound or feel) based on what is happening around you, what people are doing to you.
Don't be afraid to try again
Everyone goes south
Every now and then
You've done it why can't someone else?
You should know by now
You've been there yourself
This verse almost seems to me like the voice of the 'stranger'. That inner voice that you have that you don't show yourself. It's the inner voice that almost slyly suggests how to look at things, much like the serpent did with Eve in the garden of Eden. The power of suggestion can be a great influence if you let it, because suggestions can become reality when your inner voice articulates the deep seated insecurities that you've been hiding from the world.
You may never understand
How the stranger is inspired
But he isn't always evil
And he isn't always wrong
Though you drown in good intentions
You will never quench the fire
You'll give in to your desire
When the stranger comes along. . .
I hope that you aren't too hard on yourself and rather than think too much, just feel.
I don't think there's anything wrong with the stranger.
I just hope you're prepared to recognise the stranger that stares back at you in the mirror. . . .