Wednesday, August 24, 2011

25 years since Graceland

This Google News article reminded me how when I first came to New York Paul Simon's Graceland album gave me a sort of sonic anchor to South Africa. Ironically I hadn't listened to it that much in South Africa, but I had grown up with Paul Simon's music in my ears, and this album, at least in part because of its significance in my field, helped me feel grounded when I was getting to know this huge new city. It really worked for me to listen to music that was simultaneously from New York and South Africa. I listen to the album less often now, not least because of all the Karen Zoid I continually have in my ears, but when I do hear a little Graceland it gives me a particular somatic memory of travel, newness, learning, and the earlier days of this blog.

3 comments:

themarriedgamer said...

This is absolutely one of my top 10 favorite albums of all time. Have you ever watched the documentary about the making of the album? It is well worth it IMO (and I think it is available on Netflix). I first saw it in my ethnomusicology class in college, but I've watched it a few times since.

K8erpillar said...

Whoops! Left the previous comment under my spouse's google account accidentally. Still getting used to sharing a computer :P

choirgirl said...

Thanks for reminding me about the documentary, K8erpillar. I actually have a copy, though it's in South Africa, and I haven't seen it in ages. It an amazing album! And it's incredible to me what a far reach it has had. Multiple generations, and audiences all over the world, and not just in SA and the US.