Paul Simon, one of my favourite artists.I think a very decent guy but sometimes in his long career he missed the boat.
A bright guy Simon was enrolled in law school when he bolted for his long distinguished musical career.
Stevie Van Zandt, inter alia, a member of Springsteen’s E Strret band probably never finished high school but he he had a finer social inbtelligence than Simon.
Little Stevie asked Paul Simon to be part of the anti-apartheid anthem Sun City.The year was 1985.
Dylan, Springsteen Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Bono, Keith Richards, Peter Gabriel, Pete Townsend, Jackson Browne, Run DMZ,Gil-Scott-Heron, Ronny Wood, Bonnie Raitt, Lou Reed, Ringo Starr, Jimmy Cliff, Peter Garrett, Clarence Clemons all signed on.
Simon absolutely refused.
Van Zandt met Simon at a party for an entertainment lawyer they both knew.
He spoke about his experiences with anti-apartheid activists in South Africa.
Simon dismissed them as “Communist puppets.”
The ANC was a Soviet Front and the Pan African Congress was hand in hand with the Chinese government.
Simon asked Stevie, “Why are you defending that Mandela guy. He’s obviously a Communist.”
He knew this as he had been talking to a friend who knew these things—Henry Kissinger!
At this point Stevie in his best New Joisey style said,” You and Henry Kissinger can go fuck yourselves.”
p 299 Homeward Bound: The Life of Paul Simon