sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

May 24, 2011

music on monday (past midnight edition)
posted by soe 3:12 am

Rudi and I head to see Paul Simon perform at the DAR Constitution Hall this week, so I thought I’d share three of my favorite songs of his.

With my new music player, I headed off to college with a single cd — Simon and Garfunkel’s Concert in Central Park. “American Tune” was my favorite song off that album.

And three years later, another Paul Simon tune would inspire some of my favorite senior year moments. A freshman in the dorm, Brian, discovered I had borrowed a copy of Paul Simon’s Greatest Hits (from Rudi or from Rebs, I don’t remember whom, at the moment) and would stop by to hover in my doorway and talk folk music. I found out he played guitar — sometimes in the stairwell — and sometimes in the dorm living room. We chatted and found we shared a common appreciation for a number of artists, including Paul. “Mother and Child Reunion” is, I believe, the first song off that album, and the one I associate with Brian.

That blossoming friendship with Brian combined with Rudi’s ability to play guitar led to a number of all-night singalongs, with groups of us crowded into one dorm room or another to play music and sing. Brian’s only rule is that you had to sing, no matter your ability. “Me and Julio” was our best number. Eric provided the whistling and Brian and Rudi always managed to end the final strum in synch.

This post could honestly just go on and on. I could add “Cecilia” or “The Boxer” or “Homeward Bound” or “The 59th Street Bridge Song” just as easily.

Do you have a favorite Paul Simon song or seven?

Category: arts. There is/are 7 Comments.

Awww 🙂

If I HAD to pick, I think it’d be “Homeward Bound.” Though there’s nothing I like better to _sing_ than “The Boxer.” Hmmm.

(Concert in Central Park is the cd that most often makes its way into my car and stays there for months)

Comment by Jenn 05.24.11 @ 5:07 am

I remember telling my younger sister, when she went off to university (and this would be the late 80s) that everyone would have the following albums/tapes: Bat Out of Hell, and S&G Greatest Hits.
It’s really hard to pick a favorite. I’ll add Bridge Over Troubled Water, only because it hasn’t been mentioned yet.

Did you see Paul Simon on SNL last week?
Enjoy the concert!

Comment by raidergirl3 05.24.11 @ 8:34 am

At least seven favorites. Great selections and thanks for the return of MoM. American Tune is probably my favorite, but America and Diamonds on the Soles of My Feet are also right up there.

Comment by DOD 05.24.11 @ 10:12 am

@Jenn: I can totally see that. It’s hard to get tired of it.

@raidergirl3: We did see SNL last week. Good stuff! And how funny that S&G and Meatloaf were the go-to artists of the day. I think when I went to college it was more likely REM and U2.

@DOD: How did I leave “America” off my list? I think Paul is up there with Dylyan for nominee of singer poet of the nation for his ability to capture a sentiment so succinctly, yet he says the words are secondary to the music. Oh to be so successful on both fronts!

Comment by soe 05.24.11 @ 11:46 pm

So I’m late to this party, so here are a few of my faves, starting with the old S&G material:

How about “Old Friends” – a great song.

Homeward Bound” always comes to mind as I await my return home from travels near and far.

America” has already been mentioned, and this mix from the 1969 TV special, “Songs of America,” is wonderful.

I love this performance of “Graceland,” as it happened the week the song was released, so most in the audience were hearing it for the first time.

I think that “Train In The Distance” is one of Simon’s more under-appreciated songs:

From the same album, the title track, “Hearts and Bones” (featuring a lovely Spanish translation of the lyrics in the subtitles):

And then there’s “Something So Right“… just perfect.

[The Youtube videos were stripped out of this comment, so I had to make them links. Apologies… -Ed.]

Comment by Rudi 05.25.11 @ 4:01 pm

I’m even later, Rudi 🙂 it took me more than a day of pondering to narrow it to 7 (yes, I know that was probably an arbitrary number but I used it anyway), and that’s with cheating by by dividing Paul Simon solo stuff from S&G. Ack! The pressure of picking!

Paul Simon solo:
Obvious Child,
Me & Julio…(I miss our sing alongs…I can still hear Rudi and Brian strumming away while we boisterously sang it crammed in someone’s room, and I think I like that version best),
Hearts and Bones (which was already on my list, too, Rudi 🙂 )
Rene and Georgette Magritte and Their Dog After the War,
Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes
She Moves On

(No surprise here) Only Living Boy in New York (I miss you!)
For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her
The Boxer
Sounds of Silence
Kathy’s Song
Homeward Bound

Hmmm…so many good songs left out…
Other silly things:
The first Everly Brothers’ song I heard as a kid was Bye Bye Love, and I couldn’t stop laughing at it because I was used to S&G singing it. I love both versions now.
Cecilia was my favorite S&G song as a kid, though I clearly had no idea what they were really singing about. Still love it.
When I think of Scarborough Fair, which I also love (I’m sensing a theme…) I often think of Miss Piggy singing/screaching it on the Muppet Show.
I cannot see the Bookends cover without thinking of Rudi saying “Hey Artie, get your finger out of your ear!”
Paul Simon’s Rhythm of the Saints tour is by far one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to. The drummers were amazing, opening with Obvious Child was beyond awesome, Paul forgot the words to one of his songs (can’t remember which one), and they had so much fun singing with the audience on You Can Call Me Al that they sang it twice in a row (though I seem to remember Rudi saying he saw him do that, too.)

Whew! I’ll stop now. 🙂

Comment by Rebs 05.25.11 @ 5:45 pm

[…] As I mentioned on Monday, last night we went to DAR Constitution Hall to see Paul Simon perform. What a joyful show! The […]

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