Paul Simon appeared on Saturday Night Live as a musical guest this weekend for the ninth time. He played two songs in a very moving set with both orchestral instruments and a traditional band.
He supported his newest album In The Blue Light by playing his updated version of “Can’t Run But”. The first of two songs, his band consisted only of the orchestra members. The lack of percussion didn’t take anything away from the original version. Instead, the cello created the rhythm while the brass and lead violins provided the overall feel.
His second performance of “Bridge Over Troubled Water”, a Paul Simon masterpiece originally sang by Art Garfunkel, was absolutely sublime. To watch someone who is a tower of music perform arguably his most beautiful song was an incredible thing to watch. The full band was added to create the overall spectacle. They cascaded and rose just as the original but with a clearly new approach. You couldn’t expect more from someone as iconic as Paul Simon.
Simon seemed incredibly comfortable on the show, possibly because of his four host and eight musical guest appearances. It was also his birthday and the cast responded by wheeling out a cake at the end of the show. He proceeded to cut it with his hand and eat a big slice out of the cake. An endearing moment and performance by one of the greatest living musicians.