PC 33540 Still Crazy After All These Years
Produced by Paul Simon and Phil Ramone
Released on October 1975
US CHART POSITION #1 . . . GOLD ALBUM . . .
GRAMMY: ALBUM OF THE YEAR . . . UK CHART POSITION #6
Find it at GEMM
PC 33540 cover
[high resolution scan]

K ronomyth 4.0: SINGLE SIMON. Paul Simon’s divorce from his first wife set the stage for the bittersweet, beaten, yet occasionally brilliant Still Crazy After All These Years. The album is typically eclectic but a little less impressive than his last two albums. Then again, it did win the Grammy for Album of the Year, so obviously somebody was impressed with it. I’ve always seen in the album’s songs a mirror for the mid-Seventies malaise in America. In a society where free love had become free sex, and where the national outcry had shifted from the cost of war to the price of gasoline, Simon the White Knight of American Idealism was fading into something of a red, white and blue cynic. The jazzy opening title track, said to be inspired by Simon’s study under Bill Evans bassist Chuck Israels (a claim I can’t deny or confirm), sets a complicated and troubled tone that persists throughout the album. It’s a powerful song, and the moment following the line “It’s all gonna fade,” where the song seems to come unstuck from reality and float in the sweet limbo of remembrance, is one of those indelible moments in music that everyone should hear. Over the next few songs, Still Crazy would seem to be his crowning achievement: a much-anticipated reunion with Art Garfunkel on “My Little Town,” the perfectly McCartneyesque “I Do It For Your Love” and the insidiously funky “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover.” After that, however, the deluge of depression: the elegiac “Night Game,” a surprisingly flat gospel duet with Phoebe Snow, “Gone At Last,” a return to the title track’s haunts, “Some Folks’ Lives Roll Easy,” and so on. By album’s end, the man who once called himself Jerry Landis sounds more like Jeremiah the weeping prophet. It’s still a good album, and it would be five years before Simon made another (the quasi-soundtrack One Trick Pony), but if you’re looking for the year’s best album, listen to The Hissing of Summer Lawns, Fleetwood Mac, Toys in the Attic, Physical Graffiti, A Night at the Opera, etc.

TRACK LISTING

  1. STILL CRAZY AFTER ALL THESE YEARS    3:25
  2. MY LITTLE TOWN    3:52
  3. I DO IT FOR YOUR LOVE    3:35
  4. 50 WAYS TO LEAVE YOUR LOVER    3:35
  5. NIGHT GAME    2:47
  6. GONE AT LAST    3:24
  7. SOME FOLKS' LIVES ROLL EASY    3:10
  8. HAVE A GOOD TIME    3:23
  9. SILENT EYES    3:57

    CD reissue bonus tracks
  10. SLIP SLIDIN' AWAY (DEMO)
  11. GONE AT LAST (DEMO)

    All songs written by Paul Simon

CREDITS

PAUL SIMON -- vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, horn and string arrangements
STEVE GADD -- drums
TONY LEVIN -- bass
RALPH McDONALD -- percussion
Ken Asher -- electric piano, organ (3,4)
Patti Austin -- vocal background (4)
Joe Beck -- electric guitar
Barry Beckett -- electric piano, piano (1,2)
Mike Brecker -- saxophone (1,7)
Pete Carr -- electric guitar (2)
The Chicago Community Choir -- background vocals (10)
Eddia Daniels -- saxophone (7)
Gordon Edwards -- bass (6)
Jerry Friedman -- electric guitar (3)
Art Garfunkel -- vocals (2)
Roger Hawkins -- drums (1,2)
David Hood -- bass (1,2)
Bob James -- electric piano, woodwind and string arrangements
The Jessy Dixon Singers -- vocal background (6)
Dave Mathews -- horn arrangement (2,8)
Hugh McCracken -- electric guitar, acoustic guitar
Leon Pendarvis -- piano (10)
Dave Sanborn -- saxophone (7)
Valerie Simpson -- background vocals (4,8)
Sivuca -- accordion and vocal solo (3)
Phoebe Snow -- vocals, vocal background (4,6)
Grady Tate -- drums (6)
Richard Tee -- piano (6)
Toots Thielmans -- harmonica (5)
John Tropea -- electric guitar (4)
Phil Woods -- saxophone (8)
Phil Ramone -- engineer
Jerry Masters -- engineer (2)
Burt Szerlip -- recordist
Glen Berger -- recordist
Edie Baskin -- cover photo
John Berg -- cover design
Anthony Maggiore -- cover design

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US October 1975 Columbia LP PC 33540 picture sleeve
US 1975 Columbia LPQ PCQ 33540 quadrophonic, picture sleeve
UK/NET 1975 CBS LP S86001 picture sleeve
JPN 1975 CBS LP SOPO-102 picture sleeve
US 1981 CBS Mastersound LP HC-43540 halfspeed master
GER 1980s Warner Bros. LP 925 591-1 picture sleeve
UK 2004 Warner CDX 78901-2 digital remaster w. bonus tracks
JPN 2006 Warner CDX WPCR-12414 digital remaster w. bonus tracks
UK 2011 Sony CDX 81999-2 digital remaster w. bonus tracks

 

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