America, Countries, Culture, Ireland, UK

Rainy Days and Songdays – Paul Simon in New York

We’ve lived so well so long But when I think of the road we’re travelling on I can’t help but wonder what’s gone wrong Paul Simon, American Tune

Rhymin’ Simon never billed himself as a protest singer but his American Tune spoke to the Nixon Years… and to today.

It is apt then that he is singing it now in his virtual set.

And chose it as the penultimate song in Dublin in his farewell tour. See him perform it here on American TV

In American Tune, the New York prophet has caught the zeitgeist.

Paul Simon in his pomp.

I unashamedly and boldly sang it on the streets of Manhattan on my last visit.

As I jostled through the throb of Times Square.

Sweltering in my cowboy hat, a rucksack on each shoulder, and dragging a suitcase behind me.

Simon & Garfunkel’s protests were never in the same vein as Bob Dylan and Joan Baez.

But they spoke to a Scottish adolescent in the 70s and sang of a different freedom, of travel, in a greyhound bus.

I went to look for America in the Eighties in the iconic coach from New York to Boston

Where we came across our first Native Americans, a vagrant, but alas no shifty-looking spy in a gaberdine suit.

Thirty years later I was on another Greyhound on the way from Washington DC and Easy DC to Philadelphia and Philadelphia Freedom.

And I was thankful to the driver for making up the time we had lost waiting in DC for passengers.

You see I only had an afternoon to see the cracked old bell and follow in the footsteps of Benjamin Franklin and Rocky Balboa.

Before it was then off to NY

When I ‘counted the cars on the New Jersey Turnpike.’

Another famous New Yorker was waiting for me in Times Square when I got there.

And he obviously had his hand out.


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