You can call him Al...
Paul Simon is an American singer and songwriter who can boast of having won 16 Grammy Awards to date, either as a duet with his friend Art Garfunkel or solo. Compère whom he met at the age of 11 and with whom he would form one of the most famous duos of the 70s a few years later.
It was around the age of 13 that he composed his first track "The girl for me", a track which would become a few years later the first official track of the magical duo. And it was 3 years later, in 1957, that he had his first ranked title when he composed, again with Garfunkel, the track "Hey, schoolgirl" which would be released under the band name Tom & Jerry ...
Simon will write no less than 30 songs between 1957 and 1964, under different Label and under different pseudonyms such as Jerry Landis, Paul Kane and other True Taylor. He also enjoyed great esteem with the title "Motorcycle" under the group name Tico & The Triumphs.
Everything changed from 1964 when he officially formed the duo with Garfunkel. They release a first album “Wednesday morning, 3A.M." which will initially go relatively unnoticed.
Disillusioned, Simon left to recharge his batteries across the Channel and pursued a solo career playing in local clubs and bars. He took the opportunity to soak up as many influences as possible from there, composed a new album "The Paul Simon songbook" which he released shortly after. Unfortunately, this does not change the situation at all and it is yet another failure.
Back across the Atlantic from 1965, the track "Sounds of silence" from the album "Wednesday morning" was reworked and offered to radio stations. And this time, the title is a real hit, not only in the United States but also around the world. This time, the artist’s career takes a meteoric acceleration.
The duo then reformed and produced no less than 4 albums including the cult "Bridge over trouble water" which was released in 1970. To which is added the enormously popular "Mrs. Robinson ", released in 1968, and which will undoubtedly remain as one of their Masterpieces.
And despite the gigantic success of the album, the duo ended up breaking up the same year. Simon released an album which bears his name only 2 years later. A very astonishing album, type World Music and which will be considered as one of the very first reggae albums made by a white musician. The critics are unanimous on the obvious quality of the opus and the single "Mother and child reunion" which is extracted from it will make a real worldwide hit. To the point of officially giving the starting signal for the artist's solo career.
A year later, in 1973, the album "There goes rhymin’ Simon" was released, which would do almost as well as its predecessor. In particular thanks to the flagship titles “Kodachrome” and “Loves me like a rock” which also become mega planetary hits.
New album in 1975 "Still crazy after all these years". As light and airy the previous album was, this one will explore a darker side of the artist. Dark side highlighted by the depressive phase the artist goes through after his divorce. This does not prevent him from signing several very high caliber titles including the enormous single "50 ways to leave your lover" which will also trample the top of the Charts. The rewards are raining down, as much for the artist as for the album.
The second half of the 1970s saw him less active in his solo career and more active in outside projects. The only notable solo success was the track "Slip slidin’ away" released in 1977.
So we had to wait for the change of decade and the 80s to see him release a new album with "One-Trick pony". Album with certain but limited success, a success limited by the fierce competition of the Disco wave. Album from the film of the same name written by Simon and in which he also acts. Only one title will stand out, namely "Late in the evening".
The end of 1970 was a period of withdrawal and mixed success for the artist. The beginning of 80 will unfold more or less the same way. The album "Hearts and bones" which came out in 1983 will go down in history as the lowest ranked of all his discography. While he is considered by some to be one of his best ... go figure !
It will take 3 years for the artist to recover. A bad thing for a hell of a lot because the album which will be released in 1986 will meet with incredible success. Recorded in South Africa, influenced as much by Pop as by World Music, "Graceland" will shatter everything in its path. To the point of becoming, unlike the previous one, the highest ranked album of the artist's entire discography. In particular thanks to titles like "You can call me Al", "Graceland" and "The boy in th bubble", the palm of the biggest success being to be put to the credit of the 1st title. The album will also garner an impressive number of awards.
Building on this mixed success, Simon tried again 3 years later and returned in 1990 with a new album once again in exotic colors, this time Brazilian, "The Rythhm of the saints". A recipe that definitely works well, because the album is in turn a huge success. Paradoxically, only one title will be popular with the public, namely "The obvious child"
The concert he will organize in Central Park in 1991 will serve as the highlight of these 2 albums when he decides to stage African and South American groups. A gigantic concert, which will attract more than 750,000 spectators and which will remain as one of the greatest concerts of all time.
A huge triumph which will unfortunately be the last, what will come out later will bring hardly any notorious success to the artist. Whether it is records or musical productions ...
To discover or rediscover.
Discography (among others ...) :
True or false 1958
Mother and child reunion 1972
Loves me like a rock 1973
The sound of silence 1974
Gone at last 1975
50 ways to leave your lover 1975
Slip slidin’ away 1977
Late in the evening 1980
You can call me Al 1986
The boy in the bubble 1987
The obvious child 1990
Something so right 1995
1958 ... impossible to imagine at this stage the awesome sequel that awaits this little youngster who for the moment officiates under the name of Jerry Landis ... There is talent but we do not imagine how much ...
1961 ... serious things begin. Always in a style typical of the time, the young singer recorded his first success. This time, the machine is well and truly launched ...
1972 ... the rest of the 60s will be devoted to a small duo ... with a certain Garfunkel. One of the most incredible duos in the history of modern music and who will produce several of the most famous titles of the end of the 20th century. The duo page having closed at the beginning of the 1970s, he is once again transformed. Everything has evolved : the style, the voice, the tempo. A radical change !
1973 ... the Simon & Garfunkel page being definitively closed, the artist now has free rein to give the best of himself in solo and especially in his own style. And he does not deprive himself of it and it pays off. It's planetary top hit on planetary top hit !
1973 ... multiple influences run through him at the start of the decade, that's undeniable. Anyway, the public loves when we see the level of sales scores more than impressive !
1974 ... only one track in 1974 from a live album but not just any track. One of the jewels of the magical duo, dating from 1964 and taken especially for this live. CULT !
1975 ... after World Music, the time for Gospel has come. The artist borrows all possible musical voices and scrambles the tracks at will ...
1975 ... here he is back in intimate mode and in this niche, he is one of the best in the world. This title will undeniably remain as one of his most emblematic and from the 1970s period !
1977 ... and what about this one! Still in the same vein, this title will be almost as strong as its predecessor. Very simple but extremely effective !
1980 ... he will have known the decade 50, the decade 60, the decade 70 and here it begins without any complex the decade 80. And history will show that he has no fear to have on the continuation of events !
1983 ... after an empty year 1982, here he is back in great shape. With a title that will not necessarily be his best but it is notable that the style has evolved, it is clear
1986 ... new air gap between 1984 and 1985. And shattering return with what will surely remain as one of his biggest hits. Here he signs one of the biggest dance hits of the decade, on a style once again based on World Music, influences that are dear to him. MAS-TER-FUL !
1986 ... huge year 1986 with a second top hit in the wake. Undeniably, his best Cru of the decade. An inspiration that will have taken the best of all the influences of each decade that he has gone through. A rare genius ...
1987 ... we start again on roughly the same bases as the previous year. A style more and more shifted compared to the time but for the moment, he resists and the public continues to follow !
1990 ... exceptional longevity! After the end of the 80s when he did not spend much, here he arrived again in the next one. Here he signs his last notorious top hit. It had to happen one day ...
1995 ... he will not do better in this decade 90. Might as well end on this pretty ballad, one more. But what a career !
Official Website :
https://www.paulsimon.com/ Greatest Hits :