Ignored, Maligned, and Forgotten Music

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Kodachrome - Paul Simon

Legbamel Not-Pop

I’ve been a fan of Simon and Garfunkel since I was a kid, since I first heard the "Concert in Central Park" record (which I liberated from my parents’ neglected collection and still have, by the way, and from which this track comes). I’ve followed Paul Simon’s solo career over the ensuing decades, as well. Of all of the songs I love from both the collaboration and the solo work, Kodachrome remains my favorite. It’s just such a pure song, toe-tapping happy without being sappy, now-retro but celebrating something that everyone used to love--color film.

These days, few people worry about their film and on what paper it will be developed. We take a hundred shots with our camera phones, keep four, and stuff them into a dark hard drive where they won’t see the light of day unless we want to post them on Facebook. If I had to make a list of my 100 favorite songs of all time, Kodachrome easily make the cut. Not only does it make me smile but it reminds me of a time when sharing your photos meant gathering together the poring over a photo album, passing around embarrassing shots of your pals among your close friends but not publicly making fools of them. The glossy, colorful little rectangles were pieces of shared experiences, inside jokes you could carry with you. Every one of mine is printed in Kodachrome.

2 Responses so far.

  1. Anonymous says:

    I love this song too. It is a pure pop masterpiece, and every time it comes on the radio it takes me back to being a young teenager in the 70s (what a rich musical time that was). I don't think pop gets any better than this - wise, melodic, funny, sweet, and jammin!

  2. legbamel says:

    I read somewhere that Paul Simon intended to write a song about "going home" but thought that the theme and phrase were overdone. He changed it to Kodachrome and it turned out to be exactly the right move. Thanks for your comment!

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