From what I’ve read and heard Paul Simon is the favorite songwriter of many of his contemporaries. It’s not that hard to understand why. I’ve seen several of his peers cover his songs in concert. Don Henley rightfully referred to him as an American Treasure and he definitely deserved his Kennedy Center Honors acknowledgement for his “exemplary lifetime achievement in the performing arts.” When you step back and listen to his catalogue of music it is quite remarkable. The breadth and depth of songs is impressive. As a bonus you get to hear his continued growth and evolution as an artist.
When he was in Simon & Garfunkel I always felt his strength was his lyrics and the ability to be topical and fit in well with the times. The music was solid but not awe inspiring. As he has aged he seems to have become even more about the music. Paul is constantly experimenting with different types of rhythms and influences. It doesn’t feel like he is worried about being current or topical but rather exploring his own artistic capabilities and what’s possible. Like all good artists he isn’t content to stand pat and rest on his laurels (which are many). Fortunately for all of us who are fans he still is a great lyricist with a considerable amount to say. I’ve picked “American Tune” because it has always been one of my favorites. It is also somewhat nostalgic to see Dick Cavett introducing him.
- Mother and Child Reunion (snopes.com)
- Still Crazy About Paul Simon After All These Years (wxrt.cbslocal.com)
- Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes: Paul Simon (keepthecoffeecoming.wordpress.com)
- Paul Simon – 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover + lyrics (by… (seattle-gadgets.tumblr.com)