My music: the little clever fellers

When I say “clever”, I mean that these two blokes wrote (write ? – that I don’t know) songs that were wonderfully melodious and appealing, but also meaningful. I refer to two of my favourites who were both big stars in the ’70s but are still writing and performing – Paul Simon and Paul Williams.

(The “w.m. and a.” part could be truly applied to, say, “What a day for a daydream”, but certainly not the “m.”, for instance ..)

Whereas Simon’s career has been that of an absolutely successful and admired around the world musician,

as indicated by his official website (link behind screengrab), Paul Williams’ career has been much more varied,

as is clear from his website (link also provided behind screengrab).

Paul Simon has performed his own compositions I believe exclusively – that is, in terms of actual recordings, anyway. Some of those I love most are:

One man’s ceiling is another man’s floor

Loves me like a rock

— which are from the album “There goes Rhymin’ Simon”; and also

50 ways to leave your lover

Have a good time

both from “Still crazy after all these years” album, and I delight in the title track.

The ’60s and ’70s weren’t just rock, not by any means: in fact it was during those two decades that some of the loveliest songs ever written in the ‘pop’ genre (which is to say, music listened to by the youth of the day) were released.

Two of Paul Williams’ most haunting tracks are

Evergreen – an Academy Award winner !, and

The Rainbow Connection. Now THERE’s a novel version .. or not really – the song is Kermit’s, after all.

Williams has written so many wonderful songs that I can’t possibly enumerate them; but “Rainy days and Mondays”, “Out in the Country” – yesss ! Three Dog Night recorded it !, “Someday man”, “Ordinary Fool” – dozens and dozens of examples of beautiful music with terrific lyrics. If I don’t link to them it’s only because I know I would immediately wish I’d mentioned different songs.

But here’s one from Randy Newman written about Paul Williams ! You will soon learn why .. [grin] It’s a great song, btw, and you’ll enjoy it, I think. As to why Newman wrote this song .. you have only to listen to the lyrics of Williams’ Do you love me babe ? ..

So my use of the adjective “clever” should now be clear: these are men almost without peer in their industry, and they deserve all the accolades their fans heap on them.

12 thoughts on “My music: the little clever fellers

  1. Well, of course I knew about Paul Simon, but although I know some of the other Paul’s songs, I was not really aware of him, so thank you for enlightening me. He clearly deserves to be recognised more rather than just his work being known.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ll check out Spotify this afternoon and have a listen. Of course, Mr R, will know who Paul Williams is, so I just asked him. Short bloke with blond hair, he said, and he recognised Kermit’s song from the title. While he loves Paul Simon, he never could get into the other. :)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I saw Simon & Garfunkel perform live in Sydney when I was a young thing – it’s scary to think how long ago that was now. We had a glimpse behind the stage and there were two cars ready with engines running, door open and security guards everywhere – after performing they both ran off the stage and were shoved straight into the cars which took off at speed – I’ve always remembered wondering what a strange life it must be, always having to be aware of threats/kidnapping attempts etc. Wonderful musicians.


    • I would’ve guessed it was to avoid the screaming fans ! :D
      Art Garfunkel was carried on Paul Simon’s coat-tails to a fairly large degree, I feel.
      You knew nothing of Paul Williams, of course – scarcely any Aussies realize how many songs he wrote for more famous performers than himself; but Stringer and I had many LPs of him singing his own songs, and we loved his music. I was put onto him by the fellers in The Daly-Wilson Big Band, when I toured with them on a small fllm crew making a doco on them.


  4. I thought Art Garfunkel wrote songs too – I need to check. I always loved his singing.
    There’s a Utube video of Paul Simon playing guitar with George Harrison of the Beatles fame – wonderful playing, just the two of them.
    I have to ‘fess up I didn’t know about Paul Wiliams – see, I’ve learnt something from your blog already! (grin)


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