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Paul Simon

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Graceland, Paul Simon Graceland by Paul Simon ranked # 81 on Rolling Stone Magazine's 500 Greatest Albums list.

Graceland is an album released in 1986 by Paul Simon. The title track was inspired by a visit to Graceland, Elvis Presley's estate in Memphis, Tennessee. Simon, in the Graceland Classic Albums video, has said that he considers it the best song he has ever written.

Coming at a time when Simon's musical career was at something of a low ebb following the disappointing public response of Hearts and Bones (album), the project was originally inspired by Simon's repeated listening to a cassette of the Bhundu Boys instrumental "Gumboots", given to him by a friend. He later wrote lyrics to sing over a re-recording of the song, which became the fourth track on the album.

Much of the album was recorded in South Africa and featured many South African musicians and groups. Simon faced accusations that he had broken the cultural boycott imposed by the rest of the world against the apartheid regime in South Africa. This view was not supported by the United Nations Anti-Apartheid Committee, as the album showcased the talents of the black South African musicians while offering no support to the South African government. The worldwide success of the album introduced some of the musicians, especially the vocal group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, to global audiences of their own.

Simon included American 'roots' influences with tracks featuring Zydeco and Tex-Mex musicians. The Everly Brothers sing harmony on the title track. Linda Ronstadt appears on the track "Under African Skies", the second verse of which Simon wrote based on her childhood experiences. The group Los Lobos appear on the last track, "All Around The World or The Myth Of Fingerprints." A popular music video starring Simon and Chevy Chase was made for the hit song "You Can Call Me Al".

Track Listing
  1. The Boy In The Bubble
  2. Graceland
  3. I Know What I Know
  4. Gumboots
  5. Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes
  6. You Can Call Me Al
  7. Under African Skies
  8. Homeless
  9. Crazy Love Vol. II
  10. That Was Your Mother
  11. All Around The World Or The Myth Of Fingerprints
  12. Homeless (Demo)
  13. Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes
  14. All Around The World Or The Myth Of Fingerprints

100 Greatest Albums of All Time

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