Paul Frederic Simon was born 13 October 1941, Newark, New Jersey, USA. Simon first entered the music business with partner Art Garfunkel in the duo Tom And Jerry. In 1957, they scored a US hit with the rock 'n' roll influenced 'Hey, Schoolgirl'. After one album, they split up in order to return to college. Although Simon briefly worked with Carole King recording demonstration discs for minor acts, he did not record again until the early 60s. He was signed to CBS Records by producer Tom Wilson and reunited with his erstwhile partner Garfunkel.
The duo recorded a handful of highly succesful albums, containing some of Simons classic songs like "Sounds of Silence", "I Am a Rock", "Mrs Robinson" and "Bridge Over Troubled Water". The partnership ended amid musical disagreements and a realization that they had grown apart.
After the break-up, Simon took songwriting classes in New York and prepared a stylistically diverse solo album, Paul Simon. The work incorporated elements of Latin, reggae and jazz and spawned the hit singles 'Mother And Child Reunion' and 'Me And Julio Down By The Schoolyard'. One year later, Simon returned with the much more commercial There Goes Rhymin' Simon which enjoyed massive chart success and included two major hits, 'Kodachrome' and 'Take Me To The Mardi Gras'. A highly successful tour resulted in Paul Simon In Concert: Live Rhymin', which featured several Simon And Garfunkel standards. This flurry of creativity in 1975 culminated in the chart-topping Still Crazy After All These Years which generated two Grammy Awards (Album Of The Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance).
The wry '50 Ways To Leave Your Lover', taken from the album, provided Simon with his first US number 1 single as a soloist, while 'My Little Town' featured a tantalizing duet with Garfunkel. A five-year hiatus followed during which Simon took stock of his career. He appeared briefly in Woody Allen's movie Annie Hall, recorded a hit single with Garfunkel and James Taylor ('(What A) Wonderful World'), released a greatest hits package featuring two new tracks, including the hit single 'Slip Slidin' Away', and switched labels from CBS Records to Warner Brothers Records. In 1980, he released the ambitious One-Trick Pony, from his movie of the same name. The movie included cameo appearances by the Lovin' Spoonful and Tiny Tim but was not particularly well-received even though it was far more literate than most 'rock-related' projects. In the wake of that project, Simon suffered a long period of writer's block, which was to delay the recording of his next album.
Meanwhile, a double-album live reunion of Simon And Garfunkel recorded in Central Park was issued and sold extremely well. It was intended to preview a studio reunion, but the sessions were subsequently scrapped. Instead, Simon concentrated on his next album, which finally emerged in 1983 as Hearts And Bones. An intense and underrated effort, it sold poorly despite its evocative hit single 'The Late Great Johnny Ace' (dedicated to both the doomed 50s star and the assassinated John Lennon ). Simon was dismayed by the album's lack of commercial success and critics felt that he was in a creative rut.
That situation altered during 1984 when Simon was introduced to the enlivening music of the South African black townships. After an appearance at the celebrated USA For Africa recording of 'We Are The World', Simon immersed himself in the music of the Dark Continent. Graceland was one of the most intriguing and commercially successful albums of the decade with Simon utilizing musical contributions from Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Los Lobos, Linda Ronstadt and Rockie Dopsie And The Twisters.
The project and subsequent tour was bathed in controversy due to accusations (misconceived according to the United Nations Anti-Apartheid Committee) that Simon had broken the cultural boycott against South Africa. The success of the album in combining contrasting cross-cultural musical heritages was typical of a performer who had already incorporated folk, R&B, calypso and blues into his earlier repertoire. The album spawned several notable hits, 'The Boy In The Bubble' (with its technological imagery), 'You Can Call Me Al' (inspired by an amusing case of mistaken identity) and 'Graceland' (an oblique homage to Elvis Presley 's Memphis home).
Although Graceland seemed a near impossible work to follow up, Simon continued his pan -cultural investigations with The Rhythm Of The Saints, which incorporated African and Brazilian musical elements.
His most recent releases are Songs From the Capeman ( 1997 ), You're the One ( 2000) and "Father and Daughter", the Academy Award-nominated song from The Wild Thornberrys Movie (soundtrack) 2002.
1. Paul Simon Songbook - CBS 1965
Tracks: 1. I Am A Rock / 2. Leaves That Are Green / 3. A Church Is Burning / 4. April Come She Will / 5. The Sounds Of Silence / 6. A Most Peculiar Man / 7. He Was My Brother / 8. Kathy's Song / 9. The Side Of A Hill / 10. A Simple Desultory Philippic / 11. Flowers Never Bend With The Rainfall / 12. Patterns / 13. I Am A Rock / 14. A Church Is Burning
Rating : 7
2. Paul Simon - CBS 1972
Tracks: 1. Mother and Child Reunion / 2. Duncan / 3. Everything Put Together Falls Apart / 4. Run that Body Down / 5. Armistice Day / 6. Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard / 7. Peace Like a River / 8. Papa Hobo / 9. Hobo's Blues / 10. Paranoia Blues / 11.Congratulations
Rating : 8
3. There Goes Rhymin´ Simon - CBS 1973
Tracks: 1. Kodachrome / 2. Tenderness / 3. Take Me to the Mardi Gras / 4. Something So Right / 5. One Man's Ceiling Is Another Man's Floor / 6. American Tune / 7. Was a Sunny Day / 8. Learn How to Fall / 9. St. Judy's Comet / 10. Loves Me Like a Rock
Rating : 8
4. Still Crazy After all These Years - CBS 1975
Tracks: 1. Still Crazy After All These Years / 2. My Little Town / 3. I Do It For You Love / 4. 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover / 5. Night Game / 6. Gone at Last / 7. Some Folks' Lives Roll Easy / 8. Have A Good Time / 9. You're Kind / 10. Silent Eyes
Rating : 8
5. One Trick Pony - Warner Brothers 1980
Tracks: 1. Late In The Evening / 2. That's Why God Made The Movies / 3. One-Trick Pony / 4. How The Heart Approaches What It Yearns / 5. Oh, Marion / 6. Ace In The Hole / 7. Nobody / 8. Jonah / 9. God Bless The Absentee / 10. Long, Long Day / 11. Soft Parachutes / 12. All Because Of You / 13. Spiral Highway / 14. Stranded In A Limousine
Rating : 6
6. Hearts and Bones - Warner Brothers 1983
Tracks: 1. Allergies / 2. Hearts And Bones / 3. When Numbers Get Serious / 4. Think Too Much (B) / 5. Song About The Moon / 6. Think Too Much (A) / 7. Train In The Distance / 8. Rene And Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War / 9. Cars Are Cars / 10. The Late Great Johnny Ace / 11. Shelter Of Your Arms / 12. Train In The Distance (Original Acoustic Demo) / 13. Rene And Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War (Demo) / 14. The Late Great Johnny Ace (Demo)
Rating : 5
7. Graceland - Warner Brothers 1986
Tracks: 1. The Boy In The Bubble / 2. Graceland / 3. I Know What I Know / 4. Gumboots / 5. Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes / 6. You Can Call Me Al / 7. Under African Skies / 8. Homeless / 9. Crazy Love, Vol. II / 10. That Was Your Mother / 11. All Around The World Or The Myth Of The Fingerprints / 12. Homeless / 13. Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes / 14. All Around The World Or The Myth Of Fingerprints
Rating : 9
8. The Rhythm of the Saints - Warner Brothers 1990
Tracks: 1. The Obvious Child / 2. Can't Run But / 3. The Coast / 4. Proof / 5. Further To Fly / 6. She Moves On / 7. Born At The Right Time / 8. The Cool, Cool River / 9. Spirit Voices / 10. The Rhythm Of The Saints / 11. Born At The Right Time (Demo) / 12. Thelma / 13. The Coast (Work-In-Progress) / 14. Spirit Voices (Work-In-Progress)
9. Songs From the Capeman - Warner Brothers 1997
Tracks: 1. Adios Hermanos / 2. Born In Puerto Rico / 3. Satin Summer Nights / 4. Bernadette / 5. The Vampires / 6. Quality / 7. Can I Forgive Him / 8. Sunday Afternoon / 9. Killer Wants To Go To College / 10. Trailways Bus / 11. Shoplifting Clothes / 12. Born In Puerto Rico (Demo) / 13. Can I Forgive Him
10. You´re the One - Warner Brothers 2000
Tracks: 1. That's Where I Belong / 2. Darling Lorraine / 3. Old / 4. You're The One / 5. The Teacher / 6. Look At That / 7. Senorita With A Necklace Of Tears / 8. Love / 9. Pigs, Sheep And Wolves / 10. Hurricane Eye / 11. Quiet
11. Surprise - Warner Brothers 2006
Tracks: 1. How Can You Live In the Northeast / 2. Everything About It Is A Love Song / 3. Outrageous / 4. Sure Don't Feel Like Love / 5. Wartime Prayers / 6. Beautiful / 7. I Don't Believe / 8. Another Galaxy / 9. Once Upon A Time There Was An Ocean / 10. That's Me / 11. Father And Daughter
12. So Beautiful or So What - Hear Music 2011
Tracks: 1. Getting Ready for Christmas Day / 2. The Afterlife / 3. Dazzling Blue / 4. Rewrite / 5. Love and Hard Times / 6. Love Is Eternal Sacred Light / 7. Amulet / 8. Questions for the Angels / 9. Love and Blessings / 10. So Beautiful or So What
Original albums as listed and rated on “Rate Your Music” - December 25 - 2005
4 Graceland - 1986
35 Songbook - 1965
52 Paul Simon - 1971
53 Still Crazy After All these Years - 1975
62 There Goes Rhymin´Simon - 1972
77 Rhythm of the Saints - 1990
147 Live Rhymin´ - 1974
208 One Trick Pony - 1980
436 You´re the One - 2000
453 Hearts and Bones - 1983
581 Songs From the Capeman - 1997 Check and Rate Here!
December 25 - "rateyourmusic.com"
My Suggestion For a 80 minutes (app.) Best Of Compilation:
1. Mother and Child Reunion ( Simon ) Paul Simon
2. Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard ( Simon ) Paul Simon
3. American Tune ( Simon ) There Goes Rhymin Simon
4. Late in the Evening ( Simon ) One Trick Pony
5. Duncan ( Simon ) Paul Simon
6. Peace Like a River ( Simon ) Paul Simon
7. Kodachrome ( Simon ) There Goes Rhymin Simon
8. Take me to the Mardi Grass ( Simon ) There Goes Rhymin Simon
9. Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover ( Simon ) Still Crazy After All These Years
10. Still Crazy After All These Years ( Simon ) Still Crazy After All These Years
11. Slip Sliding Away ( Simon ) Greatest Hits
12. Allergies ( Simon ) Hearts and Bones
13. Hearts and Bones ( Simon ) Hearts and Bones
14. Rene and Georgette ( Simon ) Hearts and Bones
15. Cars are Cars ( Simon ) Hearts and Bones
16. You Can Call Me Al ( Simon ) Graceland
17. You´re the One ( Simon ) You´re the One
18. How the Heart Approaches ( Simon ) One Trick Pony
19. Train in the Distance ( Simon ) Hearts and Bones
20. The Boy in the Bubble ( Simon ) Graceland
21. Under African Skies ( Simon ) Graceland
22. All Around the World ( Simon ) Graceland