fbpx

May 30

A Tribute to the Vietnam War: “Goodnight Saigon” by Billy Joel

0  comments

Time has a way of healing wounds or making them easier to look at to see if they’ve scabbed up. The guys came home from Vietnam and that’s it? It doesn’t end until these guys are absorbed into the mainstream and we deal with our feelings about it. (Billy Joel)

A Tribute to the Vietnam War: "Goodnight Saigon" by Billy Joel 1
Billy Joel. Photo Credits: hellomagazine.com

Song Background

Released in 1982, “Goodnight Saigon” is a song penned by the Piano Man Billy Joel. It was one of the songs included on his album that year named The Nylon Curtain.

Goodnight Saigon” depicts and centers on the Vietnam War that happened in the 50’s. It portrays the condition and situation of the U.S. Marines starting with their military training and into their diverse traits of Vietnam combat.

To note, the song was a chart-topper overseas. It placed no. 1 on the Ultratop 50 Flanders in Belgium. Also, it ranked no. 1 on the Dutch Top 40 and Single Top 100 charts both in the Netherlands.

Meanwhile, “Goodnight Saigon” ranked no. 19 and no. 29 on the Irish Singles and UK Singles charts, respectively. However, it fared low in the U.S. reaching no. 56 on the Billboard Hot 100.

A Tribute to the Vietnam War: "Goodnight Saigon" by Billy Joel 2
American troops during the Vietnam War. Photo Credits: vietnamveteransplaza.com

Song Theme

During the Vietnam War, the American troops were treated badly. The song narrates how terrible the war was and what they underwent. The lyrics focus on the U.S. Marines battling out, fighting their fears, and trying to figure out how to survive.

Moreover, “Goodnight Saigon” emphasizes that everyone who partook in the war are all in the situation together. In the song, Billy Joel underscores the fear and darkness induced in the Marines during the war. Highlighting camaraderie and unity, the refrain of the song (sang by the Marines) goes “we all go down together”.

Song Reception

Billy Joel revealed:

“I wasn’t trying to make a comment on the war, but writing about the soldier as a person.”

Moreover, Rolling Stone music critic Stephen Holden expressed:

“As the song unfolds, Joel’s “we” becomes every American soldier, living and dead, who fought in Southeast Asia.”

He further described the song as possibly the “the ultimate pop-music epitaph to the Vietnam War”. In addition, he admired Joel’s voice captivating a young soldier’s emotions. However, Dave Marsh, fellow Rolling Stone critic considered the song to indicate “obscenity” that the song refuses to take sides. On the other hand, Stephen Thomas Erlewine gave praise to Joel as the song represents “layered, successful, mature pop that brings Joel tantalizingly close to his ultimate goal of sophisticated pop/rock for mature audiences”.

Furthermore, country music artist Garth Brooks considers “Goodnight Saigon” as his favorite Billy Joel song.

Watch Billy Joel’s poignant performance of “Goodnight Saigon” live:

Any thoughts folks? Tell us what you think. Don’t forget to like and share this post. Share the country spirit folks! For more country reads, visit our website. Follow us also on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.


Tags

Billy Joel, Goodnight Saigon


{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

You may also like

Remember When Garth Brooks And Billy Joel Surprised Fans With “Shameless” Duet

Remember When Garth Brooks And Billy Joel Surprised Fans With “Shameless” Duet

Rick Trevino’s Emergence as a Hispanic Country Music Singer

Rick Trevino’s Emergence as a Hispanic Country Music Singer

“Goodnight Saigon”: Garth Brooks’ Fervent Tribute to Veterans

“Goodnight Saigon”: Garth Brooks’ Fervent Tribute to Veterans

Deciphering Danielle Bradbery’s ‘Never Have I Ever’

Deciphering Danielle Bradbery’s ‘Never Have I Ever’

10 Reba McEntire Songs You Should Be Streaming Right Now!

10 Reba McEntire Songs You Should Be Streaming Right Now!

“I Need Thee Every Hour:” A Simply Beautiful Hymn by Joey + Rory

“I Need Thee Every Hour:” A Simply Beautiful Hymn by Joey + Rory

Latest Stories

Luke Combs’ Crocs is the Newest in Country Vogue Fashion

Luke Combs’ Crocs is the Newest in Country Vogue Fashion

Luke Combs: Everything You Need To Know About The Country Star

Luke Combs: Everything You Need To Know About The Country Star

Luke Combs’ “When It Rains It Pours” Finds The Bright Side of A Break Up

Luke Combs’ “When It Rains It Pours” Finds The Bright Side of A Break Up

Luke Combs’ “Better Together” Will Surely Make Your Heart Flutter

Luke Combs’ “Better Together” Will Surely Make Your Heart Flutter

Luke Combs’ “Even Though I’m Leaving” Will Give You An Emotional Experience

Luke Combs’ “Even Though I’m Leaving” Will Give You An Emotional Experience

Star-Studded Line-Up To Grace 2021 ACM’s Party for a Cause

Star-Studded Line-Up To Grace 2021 ACM’s Party for a Cause

Subscribe to our newsletter now!

Country Thang Daily

>