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Billy Joel onboard with crowdfunding of baymen documentary

Billy Joel has supported baymen on Long Island

Billy Joel has supported baymen on Long Island for years, and he is supporting an upcoming documentary, "The Bay of Imbalance." Credit: Annie Tritt

Billy Joel is supporting a crowdfunding campaign for the documentary “The Bay of Imbalance,” appearing as part of the team on the producers’ Kickstarter page.

“The film focuses on the plight of Oyster Bay’s natural shell-fishermen (The Baymen) and their fight to save Oyster Bay Harbor from the devastation of commercial shellfish dredging,” reads a statement on the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and six-time Grammy-winner’s official website.

Joel, 67, “lives on the shoreline of Oyster Bay Harbor and supports the Oyster Bay Baymen’s Assoc.,” reads the Kickstarter page, which adds that the singer-songwriter “also has key roles in the film.”

Writer-director Eric Gulbransen says on the Kickstarter page that, “Due to the effects of 60 years of unregulated commercial hydraulic shellfish dredging in Oyster Bay Harbor, what was once a flourishing bay is now in dire straits. The naturally occurring oysters that gave the bay its name some 400 years ago are all but gone. Clams are scarce, fish populations have drastically diminished and as a result local wildlife is suffering.”

He advocates for “a small but determined group of natural shell-fishermen affectionately called ‘Oyster Bay Baymen’ . . . [who] are currently in the fight of their lives to save their lives, to save their livelihoods and to save Oyster Bay Harbor itself.”

The film has been largely self-funded during its two-year development so far.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the campaign had raised $12,397 toward its $50,000 goal, with 131 backers and 17 days remaining.

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