"My Life" is a song by Billy Joel that first appeared on his 1978 album 52nd Street. A single version was released in the fall of 1978 and reached #2 on the U.S. adult contemporary chart. Early the next year it peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.
The verse about an old friend who "closed the shop, sold the house, bought a ticket to the west coast, now he gives them a stand up routine in LA." is a reference to comedian Richard Lewis.
Chicago members Peter Cetera and Donnie Dacus performed the backing vocals and sang along with Billy Joel during the bridge and in the outro ("Keep it to yourself, it's my life").
"My Life" was used as the theme song for the television series Bosom Buddies (1980-82), however due to licensing issues it does not appear on the DVD release of the series.
52nd Street is the sixth studio album by Billy Joel, released in 1978. It was also the first of many Joel albums to top the Billboard charts, along with his third and fourth Grammy win. 52nd Street also became, in 1982, the first album to be released on compact disc by Sony Music Entertainment.
Three songs reached the Top 40 in the United States, helping to boost the success of the album. "My Life" reached #3, "Big Shot" reached #14, and "Honesty" reached #24. The album was also successful with critics, winning the 1979 Grammy for Album of the Year.
Allmusic credits Joel for expanding on the style of The Stranger, making it "more sophisticated and somewhat jazzy." (Jazz trumpeter Freddie Hubbard guests on "Zanzibar.") The title is a reference to the street that was one of New York City's jazz centers in the middle of the century. Joel's label was headquartered on 52nd Street (in the CBS Building) at the time of the album's release. 52nd Street in Manhattan on the west side is called "Swing Street" for a series of jazz clubs located there.
The track "My Life" was featured as the theme to the situation comedy Bosom Buddies (performed by a different singer).
In 2003, the album was ranked number 352 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
52nd Street enjoys the distinction of being the first album to be made commercially available on CD, when the new technology was released to the market in 1982.