Paul Simon – Under African Skies
Paul Simon is 80 today.
Back in 1987, soon after he released “Graceland,” he performed a concert in Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe’s neighbor South Africa was still under apartheid rule. Nelson Mandela was still in prison.
Joining Simon that day were singer Miriam Makeba and jazz artist Hugh Masekela. Both were South Africans who had not been in their home country for 25+ years. The government exiled them in the early 1960s because of their outspoken opposition to apartheid.
So Simon set up shop next door and invited the exiled artists to join him. It was a significant moment.
Today’s song is a track from the “Graceland” album performed at that concert.
On the studio album, Linda Ronstadt sings harmony with Simon.
In Zimbabwe, Makeba sings with him.
Here’s the YouTube video of that stunning, live performance:
This version is NOT available on Spotify or Apple so watch it on YouTube. It’s one of those performances you want to see — not just hear.
The entire concert is available for DVD purchase here:
10 copies left. Buy one. You won’t be sorry.
The concert was never released on the streaming music services. So the playlists will include the album release (with Linda R.). I also link to the YouTube audio of that version below.
Title: Under African Skies
Artist: Paul Simon
Album: Graceland (1986)
YouTube Link: https://youtu.be/g4mIAXj0CLM
Here are the Playlists: