Paul Simon and the Music of the World

Paul Simon and the Music of the World

Last night’s Paul Simon concert in Nashville was one of the best I’ve ever attended. And it wasn’t just Simon’s beautiful singing, surprising energy, and creative approaches to tunes long-familiar and recent.

Even more so, it was the amazing band that Simon generously allowed to shine throughout the two-hour event. Simon’s impressive blend of talent includes Africans on guitar and bass guitar; contemporary classical female musicians and vocalists; a percussionist versed in jazz, Middle Eastern, and Indian music; a jazz-rooted saxophonist; an accordionist adept at Tex-Mex, zydeco, and blues; and a drummer from Nashville, Jim Oblon, whom Simon says “knows the sound of rockabilly and ‘50s blues that I’m always trying to get. ”

As my own journey takes me deeper each day into a mindset and lifestyle of diversity and inclusion, I’m inspired by Simon’s joyful act of bringing the music of the world onto one stage. For me, it was a gorgeous demonstration of what’s possible if each of loosens our grip on what is familiar and comfortable, in favor of what is different and challenging.