Prior to the subdued performance of the Graceland classic, Martin said he first heard the song when he was a 10-year-old visiting Zimbabwe; his mother is from the African nation, and he often spent time their in his youth, he told Rolling Stone in 2005.
“I was trying to get the attention of another 10-year-old girl,” Martin said Monday. “There was no texting in those days, but she was doing the Eighties equivalent of not texting me back and I remember this song playing and thinking ‘at least the music is awesome.'”
With the “Graceland” crew behind him, Martin also performed a rendition of Coldplay’s A Head Full of Dreams track “Hymn for the Weekend”:
Incidentally, both Coldplay and Simon have been in the news of late due to Hurricane Harvey. Coldplay, whose Houston concert was postponed by the hurricane, used their next gig in Miami to perform a new song titled “Houston” for the first and only time, with the track dedicated to hurricane victims.
Meanwhile, Simon and his wife Edie Brickell donated $1 million to help the small towns in the Houston area that were devastated by the storm and its historic flooding.