Movin’ Out (as made famous by Billy Joel)

“Movin’ Out (Anthony’s Song)” is a song written and recorded by Billy Joel. The track details the singer’s disgust with the upwardly mobile bourgeois aspirations of working- and lower-middle-class New Yorkers who take pride in working long hours to afford the outward signs of having “made it”.[1] Characters have stereotypically ethnic names (Anthony, Mama Leone, Sergeant O’Leary, Mr. Cacciatore) and blue-collar jobs. Joel considers their rejection of their working-class roots (trading a Chevy for a Cadillac and buying a house in Hackensack, New Jersey) ultimately futile; in the end, the rewards are a “heart attack” or “a broken back”. Near the end of the recording is the sound of a car starting up and driving away; the bass player Doug Stegmeyer’s 1960s Corvette was used.

According to Joel, Anthony is not a real person, but rather “every Irish, Polish, and Italian kid trying to make a living in the U.S.”

The 45RPM single slightly differs from the album version as the sound effects of the car near the end of the song were removed.