11 Songs, 43 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Released during the tense final years of apartheid, Paul Simon's Graceland introduced the buoyant textures of South African township music to vast international audiences. Simon’s collaborative genius—which calls on Los Lobos, Zydeco legend Good Rockin’ Dopsie, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo—invented a new musical language and earned a 1987 GRAMMY® for Album of the Year. The fractured narratives and emotionally fragile characters are unforgettable—whether it's the divorcé and his kid en route to Graceland, the unattainable girl with diamonds on the soles of her shoes, or the soft-in-the-middle hero of “You Can Call Me Al."

Mastered for iTunes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Released during the tense final years of apartheid, Paul Simon's Graceland introduced the buoyant textures of South African township music to vast international audiences. Simon’s collaborative genius—which calls on Los Lobos, Zydeco legend Good Rockin’ Dopsie, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo—invented a new musical language and earned a 1987 GRAMMY® for Album of the Year. The fractured narratives and emotionally fragile characters are unforgettable—whether it's the divorcé and his kid en route to Graceland, the unattainable girl with diamonds on the soles of her shoes, or the soft-in-the-middle hero of “You Can Call Me Al."

Mastered for iTunes
TITLE TIME

Ratings and Reviews

4.3 out of 5
80 Ratings
80 Ratings
Xstich ,

1986

Got the original vynal, thank you my wee brother, and onSunday 15th July going to see and hear Paul Simon again. Best album ever.

Dorothyparker1926 ,

Stunning

An incredible album made by so many incredible artists alongside Paul Simon. Happy Memories of listening to my Mum's vinyl copy many years ago. A beautiful album that is best listened to in its entirety. 🌟

Federert ,

My favourite album

Nothing quite like it, a resurrection of sorts, after the relative commercial failure of his "Hearts and Bones" album (H&B) It was in my personal opinion a very good album, but the title of one the tracks train in the distance foretold a greater prize in the form of the Graceland album, which contrary to popular opinion has little to do with the struggle against apartheid in South Africa, but nonetheless provides a backdrop to great music, a collaborative masterpiece which clearly defined Paul as a great artist beyond his great partnership with Art Garfunkel. PS had nothing to prove with this album, but even the harshest critics of his debut solo album H&B - I am led to believe where cementing its place in music folklore within days of its release. One reviewer here said its the best album ever. An understatement, I am sure was it not even better than that!!!

About Paul Simon

There are musical storytellers—and then there’s the low-key but wildly ambitious Paul Simon, who copyrighted his first song with partner Art Garfunkel when they were in their early teens. Born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1941, Simon mixed the mass appeal of ’50s rock ’n’ roll with the introspection of the singer/songwriter era, opening up a universe of emotional terrain previously unexplored in popular music. (Just listen to the playful poetry of 1968’s “Mrs. Robinson” or the existential ache of “The Sound of Silence”—songs you could whistle along to, or subject to rigorous literary analysis.) Though he was originally associated with folk, Simon is a remarkably eclectic artist, drawing variously on gospel and jazz, Brazilian batucada, and, perhaps most famously, South African township music. His landmark 1986 album, Graceland, helped build a bridge for his collaborators Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Hugh Masekela, and Miriam Makeba during the height of apartheid. For as uplifting as his music can be (think: the chorus chant of “Cecilia,” the rocksteady of “Mother and Child Reunion,” and the bright horns of “You Can Call Me Al”), at its heart is a profound bittersweetness. Embarking on his farewell tour in 2018, Simon celebrates an inimitable career spent mining themes of aging, separation, and loss with a muted reserve, suggesting that all things—good and bad—do pass.

HOMETOWN
Newark, NJ
GENRE
Pop
BORN
13 October 1941

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