PAUL SIMON FACTS:
Genre: Folk Rock, Pop
Hometown: Newark, New Jersey
Awards: 12 Grammy Awards, Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award
Albums: The Paul Simon Songbook (1965); Paul Simon (1972); There Goes Rhymin' Simon (1973); Still Crazy After All These Years (1975); Hearts and Bones (1983); Graceland (1986); The Rhythm of the Saints (1990); Songs from The Capeman (1997); You're the One (2000); Surprise (2006); So Beautiful or So What (2011)
Hits: "Mother and Child Reunion," "Kodachrome," "Loves Me Like a Rock," "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover," "Slip Slidin' Away," "You Can Call Me Al"
Other: First individual to be honored with the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
Paul Simon may be best known for being one half of the legendary folk duo Simon and Garfunkel, but the soft-voiced guitar player has carved out a name for himself a solo performer over the last several decades as well. With thoughtful lyrics and songwriting acumen that rivals anybody in the music world; Paul Simon is certainly among the few living legends around today.
Thanks to the release of iconic tunes with Art Gunfunkel, such as "Mrs. Robinson," "The Boxer" and "Ceclia," Simon's place in the music industry was already well cemented by the time he and his former partner split up in 1970, though whether his talents would translate into a successful solo career was very much in doubt. However, all those fears were allayed when his second album hit stores.
The self-titled album was popular among critics and fans alike, and featured a number of successful tracks including "Mother and Child Reunion," which is considered to be one of the earliest examples of a white performer using reggae in popular music. Also on the record was "Me and Julie Down by the Schoolyard," which remains one of Simon's most recognizable solo efforts.
Over the next several years, Simon continued to release hit after hit, most notably in the album There Goes Rhymin' Simon, which featured numerous popular folk songs including "Kodachrome," "Love Me Like a Rock," and "American Tune."
Though his productivity slowed entering the '80s, his presences within the music industry certainly did not, so when he re-emerged with the 1986 album Graceland, it came as no surprise. The record is perhaps best known for the title track as well as the upbeat tune "You Can Call Me Al." The album was so well-received by critics that it was given the 1987 Grammy for Album of the Year, and the song "Graceland" also took home Record of the Year.
Ever since the '80s, Paul Simon has never left the public eye. He remains as much a part of the scene as he ever was, and has even reunited with former collaborator Art Garfunkel in recent performances, much to the delight of fans across the world. Whether playing alone or with someone else, Paul Simon is one of the few music legends who has never strayed from his roots.
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