Paul Simon ‘Graceland’ Reissue Contest
NOTE: This contest is now closed. Thanks to all who entered. Congratulations to our winners: Lisa Kyvni, Wynn Miller, and Tommy Lagniappe!
This is the story of how we begin to remember
This is the powerful pulsing of love in the veins
After the dream of falling and calling your name out
These are the roots in rhythm
And the roots in rhythm remain
These are only a sampling of the lyrics which helped make Paul Simon’s Graceland album one of the most memorable of its generation.
Indeed, it’s been 25 years since Simon headed to an Apartheid-ridden South Africa to work with some of the finest black musicians in the area. Joined here by Ladysmith Black Mambazo and others, Simon’s Graceland was not just an intense assertion of finely crafted pop songs and imaginative folk-rooted imagery; it was an artful defiance of what was happening outside the doors of the recording studio.
The complexity of the experience around recording Graceland was captured in a documentary directed by two-time Peabody Award-winning filmmaker Joe Berlinger. The film, Under African Skies, includes conversations with Simon as he recalls the intensity of the experience – both emotional and historical – and the inspiring collaboration he had with the local musicians.
As the press release notes, “His artistic decision to collaborate with African musicians created a new world musical fusion, combining American and African musical idioms while igniting an intense political crossfire, with Paul Simon accused of breaking the UN cultural boycott of South Africa designed to end the Apartheid regime.”
To commemorate the 25th anniversary of this remarkable album, Legacy Recordings has pulled together a couple of incredible packages:
Special Graceland 25th Anniversary Collector’s Edition Box Set – a 2 CD/2 DVD set which including the remastered original album, the “Under African Skies” documentary film with extended bonus interviews, the original 1987 “African Concert” from Zimbabwe, three original music videos and the iconic “Saturday Night Live” performance of “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes.” The box set also features the audio narrative “The Story of ‘Graceland'” as told by Paul Simon, replicas of an original Graceland poster and a handwritten lyrics pad, plus a deluxe 80-page book featuring new and archival photos and interviews with Paul Simon. The box set also includes a special short audio documentary of Simon discussing the making of the record.
The official Graceland 25th Anniversary Edition CD/DVD – an exclusive two disc set featuring the remastered original album with five bonus tracks and audio documentary, and “Under African Skies” film with bonus features, three original music videos and “Saturday Night Live” performance of “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes.”
And, as we are wont to do here at ND, we’d like to give a few of these away. Three winners will be chosen. One Grand Prize Winner will receive the full collector’s edition box set. Two runners up will receive the 2-CD/2-DVD set.
TO ENTER: Add a comment here which highlights your favorite song or lyrics from Graceland. Even better if you tell us a little about why you love that song and/or why the lyrics speak to you. Only comments posted on this blog will be counted. Comments to Twitter, Facebook, or posted on this site as separate blog posts will not count toward this contest. (Although, if you’re moved, you’re welcome to dissect the album or a single song at length in a separate blog post.)
To add a comment to this post and enter the contest, scroll to the bottom of this page and type into the comment space. The contest will remain open until 11:59 p.m. PST on Monday, June 11, and the winners will be announced the next day. Anyone is welcome to enter but the prize can only be shipped to a US address.