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Paul Simon Still Sublime After All These Years

The Miami Herald has praised Paul Simon’s December 6th closing concert at Hard Rock Live in Hollywood, FL. Here is an excerpt:

There was joy in the music and performance, too, as Simon, on the closing night of the tour that began in April, seemed in particularly good spirits as he teased, “I’m delighted to be here — I say that every night.” Or the way he chuckled during the opening “I met my old lover on the street last night” in the encore number, Still Crazy After All These Years. He tagged his final encore with the surging You Can Call Me Al, a bass-driven Graceland favorite that served as one last treat for the 5,500 fans.

New material such as the brilliant The Afterlife, in which Simon imagines heaven as one more place to fill out forms and wait in line ala the DMV, and Rewrite, revealed that Simon’s songwriting prowess remains sharp. The new songs fit seamlessly with expected crowd pleasers such as Late in the Evening and Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes, which made great use of his band’s distinctive harmonies.

Simon, the details man, nevertheless never let on that any of this globe-trotting, dextrous word choosing or peerless musicianship was labored. The eloquent, intricate music and the concert’s pacing felt as natural as drawing breath.