The line, "If you're gonna have a hit you gotta make it fit, so they cut it down to 3:05" is a reference to how artists often have to cut down their songs for radio stations, which prefer shorter tracks. "3:05" is industry famous as the length Phil Spector had stamped on the single for The Righteous Brothers "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'
," which he produced - the song was actually 3:50.
Joel's experience with truncating a song for radio came a year earlier, when he had to shave more than a minute off of his song "Piano Man
" for release as a single.