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Paul Simon

4.7 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 7 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Music Canada
  • ASIN: B004MRX86U
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #8,032 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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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
12. Me And Julio Down By The Schoolyard (Demo - San Francisco 2/71)
13. Duncan (Demo - San Francisco 2/71)
14. Paranoia Blues (Unreleased Version)

Product Description

Product Description

The reggae of Mother and Child Reunion and the backing of Los Incas on Duncan (both hits) join the classic Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard and the rest of this wonderfully varied gentle gem. Bonuses: 1971 demos of those last two songs plus an unreleased version of Paranoia Blues !

How does one follow a commercial smash on the scale of Bridge over Troubled Water, one of the blockbuster pop titles of the 1960s? For Paul Simon, the strategy was simple--as in "Keep it simple." His 1972 solo debut is the bantam bookend to the expansive Bridge. Where the final Simon & Garfunkle LP was grand, Paul Simon is modest. Where Bridge served up lavish emotions, on his own Simon explored a kind of hooded, pensive melancholy. "Mother & Child Reunion", the first reggae arrangements many Americans ever heard, opens the album and casts a blue hue over the collection. An eclectic crew of players (including jazzmen Stephane Grappelli, Jerry Hahn, and Ron Carter) turn up in tunes that fit together as snugly as a winter wardrobe. By the time Larry Knechtel's electric piano fades away at the end of "Congratulations", Paul Simon, solo artist, has put that Bridge behind him and set off on his solo career. --Steven Stolder --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Top Customer Reviews

By Jimi Jac TOP 500 REVIEWER on Dec 18 2014
Format: Audio CD
Similar to McCartney's first solo offering, Simons debut has a stripped down almost world-weary feel to it.
Moving away from the S&G sound (Simon says that he couldn't see the point of regurgitating that style (although Duncan does have a little bit of El Condor Pasa feel to it)), he seems lyrical to be taking a breath & taking stock, with most of the tracks having quite simple arrangements.
The first in a trilogy of records Simon released in the 70's ("He comes Rhyming Simon" & "Still Crazy after all these Years" being the other two), with each having a simple low-fi style to them, but with the continue success of his "Graceland" album, they seemed to have been forgotten a little, which is a real shame as they are outstanding original sounding records.
The three extra tracks are all demos, but considering the album does at time sound like a demo, the tracks are pretty close to the originals.
I did buy this album on vinyl back in the day, after exhausting S&G's back-catalogue, but as not impressed at first, so this is your first Simon solo album it may take a little why to get your head around, but stick with it because this was Paul Simon really flexing his creative muscle & taking quite a big commercial risk.
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Format: Audio CD
After the breakup of Simon and Garfunkel, Paul Simon really showed his individual style and talent. This first solo album is amazing, showing the same lyrical intelligence as his earlier S&G work but even more innovation and originality. I love most of his work, but this and "Graceland" are my absolute favorite albums.
It starts off with "Mother and Child Reunion," a great song which shows intriguingly authentic reggae influences. "Duncan" is a beautifully simple song, with a unique use of South American-sounding flutes and an interesting story. The way he sings it really perfects the song; it is understated and indescribably distinctive. "Everything Put Together Falls Apart" is another interesting one, laid back but powerful. It goes nicely with "Run that Body Down," a song in which he blatantly and meaningfully uses the characters of himself and his (then) wife to deliver a similar anti-drug statement (but not in a self-righteous way). (At least that's what I have gotten out of these songs.) However, even without the message these songs both sound great, and show a new individualism outside of S&G. "Armistice Day" is one of my favorite songs on the album, starting off fairly low-key but with very interesting chords. It progresses well, and by the second half other instruments are added and the result is a fascinating fusion of folk, rock, country, and totally original elements. I love the lyrics in the second half, too--they're that distinct blend of social commentary and poetry, but with humor so that it doesn't become pretentious in any way. "Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard is my absolute favorite on this album, a classic, I think. It has upbeat, almost thrilling instrumentals and, this time, words that are really mostly for fun.
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Format: Audio CD
Paul Simon began his exciting and daring seventies career with this, his most pared-down effort. Perhaps the transition comes as a surprise after the lushness of Simon and Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water" (though there are some links between this album and that one, including the use of a bass harmonica, Jamaican rhythm, and Incan pipes.) Nevertheless, this album carries with it the thrill of a newly liberated solo artist. It immediately delves into funky territory with the memorable "Mother and Child Reunion," an excellent electric reggae number with fine female backing vocals. It proceeds to "Duncan," a song about lost innocence, and "Everthing Put Together Falls Apart," a mellow and unusual folk number (how many songs begin with the word 'Parafanalia'?). Both songs may possibly be seen as subtle comments on Simon's departure from his former duo, but each works well on its own merits. We then get to some songs that prove once again what an excellent guitar player and singer Simon is. "Run that Body Down" is simple but catchy as all get out, and "Armistice Day" is a superb performance, and a very moving one in its very understatement. "Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard" is another playfully simple classic with excellent lyrics, and it adds a sense of upbeat fun to the proceedings. "Peace Like a River" is a haunting number that anyone who has ever been up late worrying can relate to. "Papa Hobo" is a distinctly American song of sorry resignation, told from the point of view of a down-and-out fellow who somehow makes do. I love it. "Hobo Blues" is an unexpected guitar/fiddle instrumental, beautiful.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
Paul Simon was something of a surprise when it was released, and remains perhaps his best album, as it showed a level of musical diversity that probably few people thought him capable of. Musical diversity was not one of the hallmarks of the Simon & Garfunkel sound, and indeed there are none of the huge, stately, epic ballads here that dominated Bridge Over Troubled Water, or any Garfunkel-like vocal theatrics. Paul knew what kind of songs he needed to write for himself, and he wrote those songs. And they're quite interesting songs, too. It's a very loose, lively, intimate, and occasionally funny album. We see Simon goofing up and letting it loose on funny, rambling pieces like Duncan and Me and Julio Down By The Schoolyard, while making quite calculated statements on others, such as Everything Put Together Falls Apart. There are also songs here that namecheck reggae (Mother and Child Reunion), blues (Paranoia Blues), and other forms of music than the folk that Simon was pre-dominatenly known for at the time. Quite an interesting record.
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