One Band; Ten Members; One night; All Paul Simon
“The way the camera follows us in slo-mo” showered through the microphone at 9:50 PM on Wednesday night as ten musicians banded together to pay homage to the legendary Paul Simon. From the first note of Boy in the Bubble to the final encore and reprise of Call me Al at 12:45 PM, the night was filled with a collaborative tribute to the man who has donned us with iconic, thought provoking and get up and dance lyrics and music for over 50 years.
Paul Simon has evolved and re-defined his music over the years from the harsh brutal streets of New York with a comforting sense of home to the struggles of Africa. The pure honesty in his lyrics have given generations fuel for thought and change.
The first set was a unique concept bringing the entire Graceland album to life from The Boy in the Bubble to All Around the World (Or The Myth of Fingerprints). Each musician, including some special guests, lent their vocals to some of their personal favorites. The crowd was won over immediately and maintained a level of energy well into Thursday morning.
The second set brought us back to our familiar classics including Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard, Still Crazy After All These Years, 50 Ways to Leave your Lover and Obvious Child.
The final two performances of the act took us down a sentimental path with Mother and Child Reunion and Slip Slidin’ Away.
As the words, “you know the nearer your destination, the more you’re slip slidin’ away” came from the stage, we observed fans swaying, eyes closed absorbing the power of a song that defines the notion of lost opportunity and love. It was a poignant way to end the set.
The band did return for one final reprise of Call Me Al to showcase the individual instrumental talents of these fine musicians that came together for this tribute. The ensemble included guitar, accordion, symbols, drums, keyboards, base, bongos, trombone and saxophone. Each member of that band brought a tremendous amount of talent and a truly spectacular tribute to Mr. Paul Simon.
Throughout the concert, the Pour House complimented the music with strobe lighting and images of Paul Simon and pictures related to the mood of the songs.
During a musicians life, to be recognized with rewards and honors is a beautiful symbol of your achievements, but when fellow musicians pay homage to the embodiment of your life’s work, there are no words to define the importance of such an act.
Tonight, was a memorable act of kindness from the musicians of Charleston to the great Paul Simon.