I also attended last night´s Paul Simon and Mark Stewart performance at the Town Hall in NYC. They performed as an acoustic duo as part of the ´Revenge of the Bookeaters´ benefit show. The setlist was as
American Tune - beautiful version with Mark on Cello. So nice to hear this live again.
Mystery Train Intro/Mrs. Robinson - very cool to hear this as an acoustic version - Paul and Mark were really jamming on the Mystery Train part; also Mrs. Robinson got some laughs at the ´candidates
debate´ part since the second of the three Presidential debates was going on that same evening - maybe even at the actual time of Paul´s
Love in Hard Times - What a surprise!!! Mark did not perform on this if I recall correctly - instead, he just watched Paul perform it intently and even mouthed some of the lyrics (as I was doing also to a
small extent). Paul indicated that this was the first performance of the song, but maybe he was referring to the first performance in the
U.S. The lyrics changed a little from the Montreaux performance. Particularly, I believe he changed ´my heart and my mind will never last - when your hand takes mine´ to ´uneasy heartbeat, can´t relax -
then your hand takes mine.´ There were also some additional minor lyrical changes, such as ´thank God I found you in time.´ It´s interesting to see how a song evolves like this. I´m looking forward to hearing a studio version of this song. The song ended to great applause to which Paul quipped something like - ´You´re very kind, or
not kind enough!´
The Boxer - Paul and Mark´s acoustic guitar playing on this sounded so great together. Paul basically played his standard version with Mark adding some nice bluesy fills on his guitar that blended really
beautifully with Paul´s guitar playing. The audience chuckled when Paul opened the song as he has been doing recently with ´A poor boy...´ dropping out the initial ´I´m just.´
After the performance we had a chance to chat with Paul briefly as he left the theater. He graciously signed the box of my Paul Simon Complete Works Warner Bros. box set (the one with all of those great extra bonus tracks on each CD from Paul Simon all the way up to the You´re the One CD - many of which also show the evolution of songs as discussed previously). I thanked Paul for playing his new song and said something like I thought it was great. He replied ´I´m glad you liked it.´ He posed for a photo with a fan who was waiting there and even signed somebody´s two inch high bowling pin, of all things!
Here are some photos and a video from the performance. Enjoy.