Three years after There Goes Rhymin’ Simon, Paul Simon released Still Crazy After All These Years. And if it weren’t for the amazing, groundbreaking work to come in the 80s, I’d be quick to call this his best album.
A quiet, intimate record, like all of his solo albums to that point, Still Crazy doesn’t have a weak song on it. That includes the title track, one of Simon’s most famous, as well as the classic ’50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.’
But the lesser known tracks are strong, too, including Simon and Garfunkel reunion song ‘My Little Town’ and ‘You’re Kind,’ a personal favorite of mine, in which Simon sings a woman’s praises and then drops her in the funny closing lines: “I’m gonna leave you now and here’s the reason why / I like to sleep with the window open and you keep the window closed / So goodbye.”
‘Still Crazy After All These Years’ always struck me as the ultimate adult song. I’m not sure what I even mean by that, but I remember being a pre-teen, I guess, hearing that song and thinking it just summed up what it was like to be a grown up. Meeting your old lover on the street one night, not being a fool for love songs that whisper in your ears, and especially that fabulous line toward the end of the song: “I would not be convicted by a jury of my peers… still crazy after all these years.”
I grew up wanting to be the kind of adult who got a lot out of a song like that. Self-fulfilling prophecy, I guess.
But I’m not picking the title track as today’s Song of the Day because there’s another song I like even more. ‘Some Folks Lives Roll Easy’ is a simple, sweet little blues song that has always felt just about perfect to me.
Drifting through a summer night
Heading for a sunny day
But most folks’ lives, they stumble,
Lord they fall
Through no fault of their own
Most folks never catch their stars
And here I am, Lord
I’m knocking at your place of business
I know I ain’t got no business here
But you said if I ever got so low
I was busted,
You could be trusted
Some folks’ lives roll easy
Some folks’ lives never roll at all
They just fall
They just fall
Some folks’ lives