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BILLY JOEL - WE DIDN'T START THE FIRE (SONG)
Entry:29/10/1989 (Position 20)
Last week in charts:04/03/1990 (Position 44)
Peak:2 (4 weeks)
Weeks:17
Place on best of all time:911 (639 points)
Year:1989
Music/Lyrics:Billy Joel
Producer:Billy Joel
Mick Jones
World wide:
de  Peak: 4 / weeks: 23
at  Peak: 7 / weeks: 12
nl  Peak: 11 / weeks: 11
be  Peak: 6 / weeks: 12 (Vl)
au  Peak: 2 / weeks: 17
nz  Peak: 5 / weeks: 14

7" Single
CBS 655300 7 (nl)


TRACKS
27/09/1989
7" Single CBS 655300 7 (CBS) [nl] / EAN 5099765530070
16/10/1989
7" Single CBS 655300-7 (CBS) [au] / EAN 9399765530077
1. We Didn't Start The Fire
4:29
2. House Of Blue Light
4:25
   
27/09/1989
12" Maxi CBS 655300 6 (CBS) [nl] / EAN 5099765530063
1. We Didn't Start The Fire
4:29
2. Just The Way You Are
3:27
3. House Of Blue Light
4:25
   

AVAILABLE ON FOLLOWING MEDIA
VersionLengthTitleLabel
Number
Format
Medium
Date
4:29We Didn't Start The FireCBS
655300 7
Single
7" Single
27/09/1989
4:29We Didn't Start The FireCBS
655300 6
Single
12" Maxi
27/09/1989
4:48Storm FrontCBS
465658 2
Album
CD
17/10/1989
4:29The Summer Heatwave [Promo]CBS
SAMP 242
Compilation
CD
1989
4:50Souvenir - The Ultimate Collection [Limited Edition]CBS
001013 2
Album
CD
1990
4:48Greatest Hits Vol. IIIColumbia
01-488236-10
Album
CD
18/08/1997
4:49The Complete Hits Collection: 1973-1997Columbia
504502 2
Album
CD
14/10/1997
Live Unreleased Version5:13The Complete Hits Collection: 1973-1997Columbia
504502 2
Album
CD
14/10/1997
4:49Millennium Of PopSMM
496517 2
Compilation
CD
01/12/1999
4:49The EssentialColumbia
513976 2
Album
CD
22/09/2003
4:29Piano Man - The Very Best OfColumbia
519018 2
Album
CD
15/11/2004
4:47The Essential 3.0 [Limited Edition]Columbia / Legacy
88697291142
Album
CD
26/08/2008
Live5:14Live At Shea Stadium - The ConcertColumbia / Legacy
88697844442
Album
CD
11/03/2011
4:51Original Album Classics [2014]Columbia / Legacy
88843043812
Album
CD
28/03/2014
4:27Now That's What I Call 1989Now
88644468567
Compilation
Digital
04/08/2014
4:48Ultimate 80sSony
88875085602
Compilation
CD
04/05/2015
4:471000 klassiekers Radio 2 - De absolute top vol. 10Sony
19075910942
Compilation
CD
30/11/2018
MUSIC DIRECTORY
Billy JoelBilly Joel: Discography / Become a fan
BILLY JOEL IN AUSTRALIAN CHARTS
Singles

TitleEntryPeakweeks
We Didn't Start The Fire29/10/1989217
I Go To Extremes11/02/1990481
The River Of Dreams01/08/1993118
All About Soul21/11/1993349
 
Albums

TitleEntryPeakweeks
Storm Front05/11/1989121
Souvenir - The Ultimate Collection13/01/1991118
Greatest Hits Vol. I & Vol. II13/09/1992392
River Of Dreams29/08/1993131
A Voyage On The River Of Dreams27/11/1994333
Greatest Hits Vol. III31/08/1997127
The Greatest Hits Collection15/03/1998205
The Ultimate Collection25/02/20011212
Piano Man - The Very Best Of20/03/20051427
12 Gardens Live06/08/2006227
The Essential 3.021/12/2008501
SONGS BY BILLY JOEL
52nd Street
A Matter Of Trust
A Minor Variation
A Room Of Our Own
Ain't No Crime
All About Soul
All For Leyna
All My Life
All Shook Up
All You Wanna Do Is Dance
Allentown
An Innocent Man
And So It Goes
Baby Grand (Billy Joel feat. Ray Charles)
Back In The USSR
Beatles Influence
Big Man On Mulberry Street
Big Shot
Billy Joel Spoken Intro / Music Concepts
Blonde Over Blue
Captain Jack
Careless Talk
C'était toi (You Were The One)
Christie Lee
Close To The Borderline
Code Of Silence (Billy Joel & Cyndi Lauper)
Don't Ask Me Why
Easy Money
Elvis Presley Blvd.
Everybody Has A Dream
Everybody Loves You Now
Falling Of The Rain
Famous Last Words
Get It Right The First Time
Getting Closer
Goodnight Saigon
Got To Begin Again
Half A Mile Away
Hard Day's Night
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
Hey Girl
Honesty
House Of Blue Light
I Don't Want To Be Alone
I Go To Extremes
If I Only Had The Words (To Tell You)
In A Sentimental Mood
It's Still Rock And Roll To Me
I've Loved These Days
James
Josephine
Just The Way You Are
Keeping The Faith
Last Of The Big Time Spenders
Laura
Leave A Tender Moment Alone
Leningrad
Light As The Breeze
Live And Let Die
Los Angelinos
Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel)
Maybe I'm Amazed
Miami 2017 (Seen The Lights Go Out On Broadway)
Modern Woman
Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)
My Life
New York State Of Mind (Tony Bennett with Billy Joel)
New York State Of Mind (Barbra Streisand with Billy Joel)
New York State Of Mind
No Man's Land
Nobody Knows But Me
Nocturne
Only The Good Die Young
Piano Man
Prelude / Angry Young Man
Pressure
Roberta
Root Beer Rag
Rosalinda's Eyes
Running On Ice
Say Goodbye To Hollywood
Scandinavian Skies
Scenes From An Italian Restaurant
Shades Of Grey
Shameless
She's Always A Woman
She's Got A Way
She's Got A Way [Live]
She's Right On Time
Sleeping With The Television On
Sometimes A Fantasy
Somewhere Along The Line
Souvenir
State Of Grace
Stiletto
Stop In Nevada
Storm Front
Streetlife Serenader
Summer, Highland Falls
Surprises
Tell Her About It
Temptation
That's Not Her Style
The Ballad Of Billy The Kid
The Christmas Song (Chesnuts Roasting On An Open Fire) (Johnny Mathis with Billy Joel)
The Downeaster 'Alexa'
The Entertainer
The Good Life (Tony Bennett with Billy Joel)
The Great Suburban Showdown
The Great Wall Of China
The Longest Time
The Mexican Connection
The Night Is Still Young
The River Of Dreams
The Stranger
The Times They Are A Changin'
This Is The Time
This Night
Through The Long Night
To Make You Feel My Love
Tomorrow Is Today
Travelin' Prayer
Turn Around
Two Thousand Years
Until The Night
Uptown Girl
Vienna
We Didn't Start The Fire
Weekend Song
When In Rome
Where Were You (On Our Wedding Day)?
Where's The Orchestra?
Why Judy Why
Why Should I Worry?
Worse Comes To Worst
You Can Make Me Free
You Look So Good To Me
You May Be Right
You Picked A Real Bad Time
You're My Home
You're Only Human (Second Wind)
Zanzibar
ALBUMS BY BILLY JOEL
Концерт
12 Gardens Live
2000 Years - The Millennium Concert
52nd Street
A Matter Of Trust - The Bridge To Russia
A Voyage On The River Of Dreams
Album
All Time Best - Reclam Musik Edition
An Innocent Man
Billy Joel
Billy Joel The Box Set
California Flash
Cold Spring Harbor
Early Years Vol. 1
Early Years Vol. 2
Further Than Heaven
Glass Houses
Greatest Hits
Greatest Hits Vol. I & Vol. II
Greatest Hits Vol. III
Legendary Icons - Night After Day
Live At Shea Stadium - The Concert
Live From Long Island
My Lives
Now Playing
Original Album Classics
Original Album Classics [2014]
Piano Man
Piano Man - The Very Best Of
River Of Dreams
She's Always A Woman - Lovesongs
She's Got A Way: Love Songs
Songs In The Attic
Souvenir
Souvenir - The Ultimate Collection
Storm Front
Streetlife Serenade
The Bridge
The Complete Hits Collection: 1973-1997
The Essential
The Essential 3.0
The Greatest Hits Collection
The Last Play At Shea Stadium [DVD]
The Nylon Curtain
The Piano Men - Live In Tokyo (Elton John & Billy Joel)
The Stranger
The Ultimate Collection
Turnstiles
DVDS BY BILLY JOEL
A Matter Of Trust - The Bridge To Russia - The Concert
Live At Shea Stadium - The Concert
Live At Yankee Stadium
Video Album
Video Album II
 
REVIEWS
Average points: 4.9 (Reviews: 175)
Only the reviews in english are displayed: Show all languages
*****
i didn't like this one so much
****
4+
******
Absolute classic! Try singing this one at your local karaoke bar! Tounge twister!

5 --------> 6
Last edited: 31/10/2014 02:45
******
Super
****
The only Billy Joel song that's got my attention.
*****
Great!
******
A classic! The lyrics are as stong as Don McCleans 'American Pie.' LOVE This song!
******
classic track,great song!
Last edited: 03/07/2016 11:17
******
AWESOME SONG!!! i know a lot of people hate it but i reckon it takes a lot of talent to be able to go through all those historical references and still manage to make them be in chronological order and make them rhyme! he's a great songwriter!
****
This is a great song that makes you pay attention to the lyrics and I agree it was a skill to make all the references and also them relevant to the topic. I think the music video is really great also going through the decades and the burning fire.

4th UK top ten.

1 week UK Airplay#1. 10 weeks in the UK top 100.

4 weeks UK top 10. UK#7.
5 weeks Irish top 10. Ireland#3.
8 weeks Polish top 10. Poland#3.
10 weeks German top 10. Germany#4.
4 weeks Belgian top 10. Belgium (Wallonia)#8.
Denmark#11.

European Hot 100#13.

Israel#1 (8 weeks).

8 weeks US top 10. US#1 (2 weeks).
1 week US Airplay#1.

12 weeks top 10. World Chart#2.
World Chart Year End (1989): #19.

228,010 copies sold in the UK.

His sixth biggest selling single in the UK.
Last edited: 28/11/2018 23:25
****
It's good, but it is INCREDIBLY daggy and perhaps it doesn't deserve a 4.
******
My favourite Billy Joel song of all time. Love the history lesson told in the lyrics. And a passionate vocal delivery helps sell a damn catchy melody. And even studying the song during English didn't dampen the appeal of the song.
*****
Great track, one of his best.
*****
Another one of his best. After all these years I still don't know all of the words :P
*****
I've always wanted to know who did start the fire
****
Great song!
****
To this day I can still all the words, the lyrics are different and I like the chorus.
***
I respect those who can remember the lyrics to this song.
*****
5 stars
*
Terrible.
****
Really cool track.
**
Listing things, perhaps the most lazy type of songwriting there is.

It rhymes, so I guess that takes some effort (okay!), but there isn't anything special or insightful about this, it just names events/people etc. and that's it. Nothing more than that besides an unmemorable chorus.

In contention for the most overrated song on this website.
***
A little overrated but still a bit above average at least. 3.3.
******
A clever and great song.

Billy Joel hated this but his wife encouraged him to release it.


How anyone can call this over-rated baffles me. A song about history and world turmoil is something we rarely see and for that I say it is magnificent.
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