NEW YORK:

Billy Joel bade a stirring farewell to New York’s Shea Stadium on July 18 during an electrifying, sold-out final show at the same baseball park where the Beatles famously ushered in a new era in rock ‘n’ roll four decades ago.

He was joined by an all-star lineup of friends including Paul McCartney, who said

to Joel, “Came here a long

time ago. We had a blast that night and we’re having another one tonight.”

“Good evening, Shea Stadium. Is this cool or what?” Joel told the crowd at the New York Mets baseball team’s home field, which is to be razed

after the baseball season to make way for a new stadium across the street. They’re gonna be tearing this place down, but I wanna thank you... for letting me do the best job in the world.”

The show paid homage to Shea’s baseball glories, with Mets highlights playing on jumbo screens during Zanzibar. But the concert also was a mark of the stadium’s place in music history.

The show came 43 years after the Beatles’ legendary show at Shea — the first concert at the ballpark. The concert came at the height of Beatlemania and demonstrated

the sheer power of rock ‘n’ roll and the Beatles: 55,000 screaming fans at a US ballpark was virtually unheard-of at the time, and the show gave the Fab Four even more cachet among the Beatle-crazed American public.

And as if the Piano Man playing the last concert at Shea wasn’t thrilling enough, high-wattage guests turned up the excitement level.

Tony Bennett sang New York State of Mind with Joel, Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler performed Walk This Way, and Roger Daltrey of the Who did My Generation. McCartney sang I Saw Her Standing There while on guitar and Let It Be on piano — the last song of the night. Joel sat on top of piano and sang backup.

Garth Brooks appeared on stage earlier wearing a Mets jersey. — AP