Another interruption to the Trip to Sligo. I do listen to more than Bob Dylan of course. I recently had an argument with a musician at a poetry reading. He was there to enliven the session and finished with a Leonard Cohen song, a very nice arrangement of Suzanne in fact. We talked about relative merits of singer songwriters, he pushing Cohen, me Dylan. I agreed that Cohen was much more suitable for a poetry reading. Cohen has published books of poetry while Dylan sees himself (I think) as a typical American singer, writing, adapting, reinterpreting and stealing songs and song themes and airs.
Simon and Garfunkel are more like Cohen, have more self conscious "poetry" in their lyrics. I know at least one poet who uses The Sound of Silence in his poetry workshops. Anyway Simon and Garfunkel are on a eastern tour at the moment and by the wonders of the internet you can listen to and download their July 10th 2009 Tokyo concert here.
I like the early stuff especially the Bookends album and some songs from that are included in the concert. When it was released first it was young singer songwriters writing about old people now it has a different resonance.
The old men
Lost in their overcoats,
Waiting for the sunset.
The sounds of the city,
Sifting through trees,
Settle like dust
On the shoulders
Of the old friends.
Old Friends from Bookends (1968)