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Paul Simon Refreshes 10 Of His Songs On New Album, Alongside All-Star Collaborators

Paul Simon, 76, will release <em>In The Blue Light</em> on Sept. 7.
Frank Ockenfels
Courtesy of the artist
Paul Simon, 76, will release In The Blue Light on Sept. 7.

As a parting gift, Paul Simon will release a new album Sept. 7, right near the end of his farewell tour. Simon calls In The Blue Lighta fresh perspective on 10 favorite deep cuts from his own catalog.

"This album consists of songs that I thought were almost right, or were odd enough to be overlooked the first time around," Simon says in a statement on his website. "Re-doing arrangements, harmonic structures, and lyrics that didn't make their meaning clear, gave me time to clarify in my own head what I wanted to say, or realize what I was thinking and make it more easily understood."

The pop legend has collaborated with a host of notable artists on the album, including jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, guitarist Bill Frisell and drummers Jack DeJohnette and Steve Gadd. Two tracks also include the chamber ensemble sextet yMusic. "Happily, this opportunity also gave me the gift of playing with an extraordinary group of musicians."

In February, Simon announced his 2018 tour to be his last, citing the death of lead guitarist Vincent N'guini and the toll of being apart from his wife. He says he will still do the occasional performance, especially benefit shows. "I am very grateful for a fulfilling career and, of course, most of all to the audiences who heard something in my music that touched their hearts. I hope the listener will find these new versions of old songs refreshed, like a new coat of paint on the walls of an old family home."


Track list:

"One Man's Ceiling Is Another Man's Floor"
"Can't Run But"
"How The Heart Approaches What It Yearns"
"Pigs, Sheep and Wolves"
"René and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After the War"
"The Teacher"
"Darling Lorraine"
"Some Folks' Lives Roll Easy"
"Questions For The Angels"

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Emily Abshire (she/her) is an assistant producer for NPR One. She makes day-to-day programming and production decisions about the content in the NPR One app and collaborates with the newsroom to optimize audio stories for platforms beyond radio. She also hand-curates NPR One's ethical news algorithm that powers the app and is used on voice platforms. Along with other members of the NPR One team, Abshire works to envision fresh news experiences on emerging platforms, such as voice assistants and smart speakers.