Paul Simon Performs At Newport Folk Festival

The surprise appearance came during Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats' "American Tune Review" set.

By Andy Kahn Jul 24, 2022 8:56 am PDT

Paul Simon made a surprise appearance at the Newport Folk Festival on Saturday. The semi-retired singer-songwriter performed at Fort Adams in Newport, Rhode Island as part of the Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats-led “American Tune Review” set.

Many guests participated in the set honoring Simon. Those who joined Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats in covering songs written by the legendary musician included Natalie Merchant, Jerry Douglas, Marcus Mumford, Rhiannon Giddens, Lukas Nelson, Lee Fields, Lucius, Midlake, Adia Victoria, Courtney Marie Andrews, Phil Cook and the Silk Road Ensemble.

“What a joy working with Nathaniel and his incredible band,” Simon stated. “The atmosphere at the festival was nothing short of wonderful.”

Simon emerged near the end of another celebratory, collaborative set at the Newport Folk Festival. The 80-year-old began his first appearance at the Newport Folk Festival by playing “Graceland” with Douglas adding dobro. Giddens then came out for a duo performance of “American Tune,” featuring new lyrics written by Simon. All of the “American Tune Review” participants came out for a rendition of “The Boxer.” Simon was then left alone with his acoustic guitar to perform his Simon & Garfunkel classic “Sounds of Silence.”

“It’s hard to put into words the joy we felt bringing the great American songwriter Paul Simon to the Newport Folk stage,” Rateliff said. “Thank you, Paul, for your songs, your voice and your presence.”

View audience-captured video of Paul Simon’s appearance Saturday at the Newport Folk Festival below:


00:00:00
Amy Karibian (See 22 videos)
Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats (See 66 videos) and Paul Simon (See 28 videos)

00:00:00
Amy Karibian (See 22 videos)
Paul Simon (See 28 videos) and Rhiannon Giddens (See 29 videos)

00:00:00
Amy Karibian (See 22 videos)
Paul Simon (See 28 videos) , Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats (See 66 videos) , Lucius (See 101 videos) , Natalie Merchant (See 4 videos) and Lukas Nelson (See 43 videos)

00:00:00
Amy Karibian (See 22 videos)
Paul Simon (See 28 videos)

Setlist

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats at Fort Adams State Park

  • Mother and Child Reunion  
  • Kodachrome  
  • Me and Julio Down by the School Yard  
  • 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover  
  • Slip Sliding Away  
  • St. Judy's Comet  
  • El Condor Pasa  
  • Homeward Bound  
  • Cecilia  
  • You Can Call Me Al  
  • Graceland  
  • American Tune  
  • The Boxer  
  • Sounds of Silence  
JamBase Collections