The Spinners

Graceland (Paul Simon, 1986)

In American, Faye Balanon, Pop on January 18, 2010 at 10:43 am

The last time I listened to Graceland was five years ago; and listening to it now, I realize, it still sounds as excellent as the first time.

Graceland is like a movie that follows the lives of different characters confronted with different situations—all facing profound loneliness but are tragically hopeful that they will find someone: a friend or a lover. The fusion of African beats in the album offers a stark contrast to the stories being told, which are definitely about American lives. African beats speak to our bones. Once you hear them, you can’t help but tap your feet or be moved. The beats are infectious. The result of the fusion stresses the fact that themes of loneliness, love, and hope are as old as the African spirit and cross all cultural divides. Graceland reminds us that despite everything that is happening that makes our lives so hard, we need to look around and see that These are the days of miracle and wonder. It still feels good to be alive.

– Faye Balanon

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