Gone at Last [with Phoebe Snow & Jessy Dixon Singers]
Some Folks’ Lives Roll Easy
Have a Good Time
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Gone at Last (8/16/75) #23 US, #9 AC
My Little Town (10/18/75) #9 US, #1 AC
50 Ways to Leave Your Lover (12/20/75) #1 US, #23 UK, #1 AC. Sales: ½ million. Airplay: 2 million
Still Crazy after All These Years (5/1/76) #40 US, #5 AC
Still Crazy after All These Years
“The third new studio album of Paul Simon’s post-Simon & Garfunkel career was a musical and lyrical change of pace from his first two, Paul Simon and There Goes Rhymin’ Simon. Where Simon had taken an eclectic approach before, delving into a variety of musical styles and recording all over the world, Still Crazy found him working for the most part with a group of jazz-pop New York session players, though he did do a couple of tracks (My Little Town and Still Crazy After All These Years) with the Muscle Shoals rhythm section that had appeared on Rhymin’ Simon and another (Gone at Last) returned to the gospel style of earlier songs like ‘Loves Me Like a Rock’” (Ruhlmann).
“Of course, ‘My Little Town’ also marked a return to working with Art Garfunkel, and another Top Ten entry for S&G. But the overall feel of Still Crazy was of a jazzy style subtly augmented with strings and horns. Perhaps more striking, however, was Simon’s lyrical approach. Where Rhymin’ Simon was the work of a confident family man, Still Crazy came off as a post-divorce album, its songs reeking of smug self-satisfaction and romantic disillusionment” (Ruhlmann).
“At their best, such sentiments were undercut by humor and made palatable by musical hooks, as on 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover, which became the biggest solo hit of Simon’s career. But elsewhere, as on Have a Good Time (written for but not used in the film Shampoo and perhaps intended to express the shallow feelings of the main character), the singer’s cynicism seemed unearned. Still, as out of sorts as Simon may have been, he was never more in tune with his audience: Still Crazy topped the charts, spawned four Top 40 hits, and won Grammys for Song of the Year and Best Vocal Performance” (Ruhlmann).