Billy Joel’s ‘Allentown’ Receives Criticism From Current Mayor

Matt Tuerk, Allentown’s current Mayor, recently stated how he wasn’t such a fan of Billy Joel’s hit track after his staff serenaded him with the song for his birthday celebration, reported by WESA.

Joel’s hit track ‘Allentown‘ dominated the charts for months when it was released in the early 80s, easily becoming a sensation among the audiences. The song portrayed a town where people struggled to stay, wishing to leave it behind. Mayor Tuerk was seven years old when the song came out, and it’s apparent that the track didn’t age well with him.

Still, his staff wanted to surprise him with a nice birthday celebration as the Mayor recently celebrated his 48th birthday, deciding to sing him Joel’s hit piece about their beloved town. However, as the dedicated crowd mastered the lines, ‘It’s getting pretty hard to stay,’ Tuerk interrupted, laughing and declaring that no, it was not getting hard to stay.

The Mayor then stated how the track felt wrong, with the lyrics expressing it was challenging to live in Allentown as the town didn’t feel like that anymore. Tuerk noted how he didn’t know what the residents felt in 1982 when the track debuted, but they surely were pleased with the city now, with the Mayor even jokingly adding that it was getting hard to leave.

Tuerk’s reaction after his staff sang Joel’s lines about how hard it was getting to stay in Allentown:

“No, it’s not. All right (laughter). It’s so wrong. It’s like – I don’t know how it felt in 1982, but it doesn’t feel like that now. Like, I honestly have a hard time saying it’s getting hard to stay. Like, it’s not hard to stay. It’s hard to leave.”

Mayor Matthew Tuerk felt that Allentown wasn’t the ‘Allentown’ Billy sang about in his hit track as the town progressed through the years and became a place where people wanted to stay rather than leave, as Joel famously stated once.