Effort

by Tom Swift

Where some of his contemporaries were effortlessly cool, [Paul] Simon always seemed like a rock star who “tries really hard,” as [Rob] Sheffield (Village Voice, 1997) put it. But now, more than a half century into Simon’s career, it is much easier to see his determination to try hard as an asset, a weapon against complacency and cheap sentiment.

-Kelefa Sanneh, “Cool Papa: Paul Simon’s Musical Afterlives,” New Yorker, 5-9-2016