Rock legend Paul Simon could retire from performing live thanks to some health issues that have popped up in recent times.
In an interview with The Times, Simon, 81, revealed that he lost most of his hearing in his left ear while making his new album, Seven Psalms. “Quite suddenly, I lost most of my hearing in my left ear, and nobody has an explanation for it. So everything became more difficult,” said Simon.
The immediate reaction to the new condition was “frustration and annoying,” as Simon said, but it didn’t initially go further “because I thought it would pass, it would repair itself.”
This could have more implications beyond the studio, as Simon is now questioning his future performing live. It’s not entirely bad, though, as there are some songs that he is tired of dusting off.
“The songs of mine that I don’t want to sing live, I don’t sing them. Sometimes there are songs that I like and then at a certain point in a tour, I’ll say, ‘What the f**k are you doing, Paul?’ Quite often that would come during You Can Call Me Al. I’d think, ‘What are you doing? You’re like a Paul Simon cover band. You should get off the road, go home,” Simon explained.
It may sound like a somber update from one of rock’s most iconic singer-songwriters, but Simon has had quite the career. Whether it was during his time as a part of Simon & Garfunkel with Art Garfunkel or solo, Simon has created dozens of hits for over six decades. If this is the end of the road in terms of performing live, it was one heck of a run.