Two weeks before Paul Simon retires from touring, the legendary singer-songwriter will release his new album In the Blue Light.
The album finds Simon and his longtime producer Roy Halee reinterpreting 10 lesser-known songs and personal favorites from his solo catalog with help from instrumental ensemble yMusic, guitarist Bill Frisell, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis and the National’s Bryce Dessner, who contributes a new arrangement to “Can’t Run But.”
“This album consists of songs that I thought were almost right, or were odd enough to be overlooked the first time around,” Simon said of the In the Blue Light tracks in a statement. “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.”
Two of In the Blue Light‘s reworkings – “Can’t Run But” and “René and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After the War” – have been performed by Simon and yMusic during the Homeward Bound – The Farewell Tour, which concludes September 22nd with a final hometown gig at Queens, New York’s Flushing Meadows Park. In the Blue Light, Simon’s 14th studio album and first since 2016’s Stranger to Stranger, arrives September 7th.
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“It’s an unusual occurrence for an artist to have the opportunity to revisit earlier works and re-think them; to modify, even completely change parts of the originals,” Simon continued.
“Happily, this opportunity also gave me the gift of playing with an extraordinary group of musicians, most of whom I hadn’t recorded with before. 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.”
In the Blue Light 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”