Billy Joel has been announced as the next recipient of the Library of Congress' Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. Librarian of Congress James H. Billington, who called the 65-year-old performer "a storyteller of the highest order," broke the news on Tuesday, July 22.
"There is an intimacy to his songwriting that bridges the gap between the listener and the worlds he shares through music," Billington said in a statement. Joel will receive the prize in Washington, D.C. in November and will be honored at a series of events.
The singer will be just the sixth recipient of the award, which is named after songwriting brothers George and Ira Gershwin. He joins previous recipients including Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder and Paul Simon.
"The great composer George Gershwin has been a personal inspiration to me throughout my career. And the Library's decision to include me among those songwriters who have been past recipients is a milestone for me," said Joel, who's named one of the most popular recording artists by RIAA.
He has so far won six Grammy Awards including the coveted Album of the Year for his 1978 set "52nd Street". He's also a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Songwriters Hall of Fame.