Paul Simon has said that “The Boxer,” Simon and Garfunkel’s 1969 lament about an impoverished and defeated kid from New York, was somewhat influenced by the Bible, which Simon was reading at the time. “That’s where ‘workman’s wages’ came from,” he said. Simon also claims that the song itself may be a metaphor for how he sometimes used to feel in the face of criticism: like he was being beat up. An extra verse not present on the original recording sometimes makes its way into live renditions. Also of note: Simon sang “The Boxer” on the first Saturday Night Live after 9/11, in honor of New York.
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