Paul Simon Words & Music Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Paul Simon Words and Music at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Photo credit Dana Zucker, Triathlon Traveling Mom.

The new Paul Simon Words & Music Exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland left me teared up.  It was such a revelation–on so many levels.

TMOM disclosure graphicIt taught me not only about this wonderful artist’s life, but also how the music of one artist can span generations and unite them and that travel is more than about seeing the world, but absorbing and using it in my day-to-day life.

Triathlon TravelingMom Dana Zucker visited the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a guest of the attraction for the purposes of writing this review.

The Exhibit

I was immediately moved by the care that went into the exhibit by the curators of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Paul Simon, himself.  Almost all of the items are from his private collection and brought out to inspire us, the visitors. I had really forgotten what a big deal Paul Simon was until I spent the time just standing in this space and then realizing how many of the items I was so familiar with.

Spanning Generations

Paul Simon’s music is one of those rare things that can bring together generations. He brought World Music to a whole new level.

For 50 years–since 1964–Paul Simon has been inspiring people through his words and music, including my own family. Just last year, my son used Simon’s music in a school presentation about his trip to Africa, Twenty-eight years ago, his music was used at my high school graduation. Eighteen years ago, I used his songs to lull my twins to sleep. Yet, 40 years ago, I remember that green Simon and Garfunkel 8-track being played in my home by my parents when company came over. See….

Paul Simon Words & Music Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Our group meeting with the curators of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Photo credit Dana Zucker, Triathlon Traveling Mom.

Paul Simon History

It was at a school play in 1964 that Simon met Art Garfunkel and a lifetime of music was born. They began two years later when they were 13 years old, singing together and looking up to their idols, the Everly Brothers. After a long and successful career together, Paul Simon began his journey as a solo artist, traveling the world and drawing on his adventures creating “Graceland” in 1986, bringing World Music to the pop charts.

World Music drew on ideas gathered by traveling and paying close attention to the world around him.  Paul Simon was able to further explore music and create music from artists and the rhythms around the world.

Lessons Learned

From “Saturday Night Live” to “The Muppet Movie” to Time Magazine’s 100 People Who Shape The World to my personal favorite, an honorary degree from Brandeis University (where my son is a student ), and numerous other awards and achievements, Paul Simon has touched so many people.

Paul Simon Words & Music Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Three generations enjoying the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Photo credit Dana Zucker, Triathlon Traveling Mom.

Most importantly, and what made me tear up as I explored the exhibit, was what I learned about Paul Simon beyond the music: The creative process that inspires us all.  He truly believed inspiration comes from the world around us.

We can all learn a great lesson from this – that it is so important to pay attention to the world around us when we travel.  Don’t simply be a tourist. Be a traveler and absorb and use what you find.

Get your family to Cleveland, an amazing city with so much to see, do, and eat and explore Paul Simon Words & Music at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  May you find inspiration as great as I have and then go and travel the world with a new appreciation. This is not a permanent exhibit so plan your trip soon.

Be sure to explore Free Things to do in Cleveland from Tonya, Ohio Traveling Mom