Paul Simon (garageband demo)

Music and Lyrics by Alex Freeman
Alex Freeman: guitar, vocals, and garage band mix
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This is a song I chipped away at for a long time. One jet lagged morning after flying to Finland, I got up and, using Aino's old classical guitar, which I don't play particularly well, I decided to do a quick recording so I could experiment with some vocals for it. I didn't have all the words ready yet and I mumbled through some of them.

But that off-hand recording with the internal mic on my mac and some cheesy "time-travel" sound FX had just the right feel and my voice had just the right sound for this, so all attempts to record this 'formally' have ended with the general feeling that, in spite of, or perhaps because of, the low-fi quality of this, the original is better. We will get it done up right sometime, but I think this version has something.

The song is about a dream I had in which I met Paul Simon and played him some of my music. But, dreams being dreams, there were odd temporal distortions and sometimes I was talking to Paul circa Still Crazy After All These Years, sometimes to him from Simon and Garfunkel days (in black and white), and even one flash of it had him in character as Tony Lacey from Annie Hall. I thought it might make a good topic for a song. I reference, but tried not to OVER reference, some of my favorites and some more obscure tunes among my favorites. I hope you enjoy it. It's a tribute to one of my favorite musicians and poets and to a songwriter that has always been a kind of songwriting mentor and guide to me, though we've never met.

Here are the lyrics:

When I woke
The conversation was still clear in my mind
And he sang in a voice that was yours and a voice that was mine
And I knew that somehow I'd traveled back in time
But the song that I was singin' was mine
And I played to the end and I waited
to see what he'd say then

lie la lie lie lie lie lie lie

And when he spoke
He said, "son, I know it's hard
to get it all down the way that want it
and say what's really in your heart"

And Paul Simon
is takin' his time
And he's out there
And I know he's rhymin'
And I'm in a funk
'cause most of this junk
I write won't mean nothin' to

And he didn't laugh
When I told him
he could call me Al
He just kind of smiled and said,
"That's a good line. Maybe use it sometime."
But I had to confess
That that line wasn't mine
But it was only 1979
I could tell that by the mustache on his face and I knew that Graceland
Wouldn't even occur to that great man
For another seven years


It was a Song About The Moon
Turn it on and I'm there again
In my room
Listening to the radio
And I couldn't have been no more
Than one or two
And a song about the moon
It was a song about America...

("let us be lovers, we'll marry our fortunes together")

And when I woke
The conversation was still clear in my mind.