Although no date has been announced, Billy Joel's daughter Alexa Ray Joel says she and her dad will duet at her upcoming wedding. The 33-year-old singer-songwriter got engaged on New Year's Day to restaurateur Ryan Gleason, and told CloserWeekly.com, "My dad doesn’t know it yet. He’ll be cool with it. He’s very laid back, and he does whatever I want to do. It’s going to be amazing."
Although raised by Billy Joel and Christie Brinkley — two of the most famous people on the planet — Alexa maintained that her parents went to great lengths to keep her grounded: "He had a very old-fashioned upbringing, just like me. My parents tried to shield me from how famous they were when I was growing up on Long Island. I had no idea. . . I worked a long time to get good at what I’m doing. Nobody handed me a recording contract because of who my father is."
Alexa touched upon the allure of the Billy Joel song catalogue, expatiating, "He has a way of making every song sound classic and iconic because it’s really very melody-driven. That’s what I’m all about — old school."
She went on to spotlight her mother's influence on her — especially when performing — admitting, "I literally hear her voice in my mind. . . She always reminds me to just be so grateful and happy to be there and sing when I get nervous before shows. . . She’s got this natural high going and she really is the most vivacious magical person to be around. It’s hard to explain. I always say it’s like blindingly bright sunshine coming at you. That’s how I would describe Mom.”
Billy Joel and Christie Brinkley, who were married for nine years — 1985 to 1994 — have remained very close since their split, and over the years have been on hand to support and celebrate each other's ups and downs, be it weddings, health scares — or in both of their cases, subsequent divorces. During Billy Joel's 2009 divorce from his third wife Katie Lee, Christie Brinkley expressed her concern and support for Billy: ["I'm really sorry to hear this news, and I wish him the very best. And I wish them both, y'know, happiness in their future. Y'know, Billy's a great father and he's been a great friend to me over the years, and, y'know, I feel for him."] SOUNDCUE (:16 OC: . . . feel for him)
Billy Joel was asked if Alexa relies on his advice to help guide her career: ["When she has business questions, she will call and ask me. She's got a lot to learn and she's got a good business head, much better than me. But I, y'know, I made all the mistakes so (laughs) I know how to tell her to avoid them. As far as musically, once in a while. When she has a new piece of material she likes to run it by me, but she doesn't ask me for any kind of creative musical contribution. She just wants an opinion sometimes."] SOUNDCUE (:25 OC: . . . an opinion sometimes)