Paul Simon turns 80, and I needed to find an angle. Ten years ago, on this date, I wrote about my favorite Paul Simon solo cuts. And ten years ago on November 5, on Art Garfunkel’s birthday, I noted my preferred Simon and Garfunkel tracks.
There are some artists whose music I tend to continue to buy because I’ve enjoyed their body of work. Not necessarily every album but most: Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen come to mind.
I continue to buy Paul Simon-related albums. Paul Simon Songbook is the 1965 album of solo Paul, most of which ended up on early S+G albums. It didn’t come out on CD until 2006.
Two Teenagers – The Singles 1957-1961. This includes many of the recordings of the duo BEFORE they were Simon and Garfunkel, both as a duo (Tom and Jerry, e.g.) and solo artists, (Jerry Landis, Artie Garr, et al.) Worthwhile.
In 2012 (I think), I sent my copy of Graceland (1986) to a friend of mine Who Had Never Heard It. Then I bought another copy with a few remixes of songs, though NOT the 12″ inch version of Boy In The Bubble, alas.
I got Stranger to Stranger in 2016, when it came out. It took a few plays for it to “take” in my ear, but I like it.
Do it again
The most interesting concept is 2018’s In The Blue Light , a “fresh perspectives on 10 of the artist’s favorite (though perhaps less-familiar) compositions drawn from the five-decade span of his illustrious solo career.” Four songs are from You’re The One (2000), but none are from Graceland.
“Jesse Hassenger of The A.V. Club gave the album a B- and wrote, ‘It would be easy to get bogged down in treating Blue Light as a compare/contrast exercise, but what’s most impressive about is the way that it sounds more or less of a piece as its own record.'”
Nevertheless, here are a couple of examples:
One Man’s Ceiling Is Another Man’s Floor from There Goes Rhymin’ Simon (1973), In The Blue Light
Some Folks’ Lives Roll Easy from Still Crazy After All These Years (1975), In The Blue Light
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