As music’s quintessential ‘piano man,’ Billy Joel has spent most of his lifetime as a professional pianist ‘tickling the ivories,’ but the musician wants to put a stop to the killing of elephants and rhinos to make ivory piano keys, reports TIME.
Joel spoke out against the slaughter of elephants and rhinos for their ivory in support of a proposed New York bill that would ban the illegal ivory trade. The bill “prohibits transactions involving these materials with very limited exceptions and increases the criminal and civil penalties for individuals who violate this law,” according to longisland.com.
He posted this message on his website Wednesday:
To whom it may concern:
I wholeheartedly support the ivory sales ban bill pending in New York State.
I am a piano player. And I realize that ivory piano keys are preferred by some pianists.
But a preference for ivory keys does not justify the slaughter of 96 elephants every day.
There are other materials which can be substituted for piano keys.
But magnificent creatures like these can never be replaced.
Music must never be used as an excuse to destroy an endangered species.
Music should be a celebration of life – not an instrument of death.