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Paul Simon reveals mysterious hearing loss in left ear during new album’s making

“I thought it would pass, it would repair itself.”

Paul Simon

Image: Jim Dyson / Getty Images

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Paul Simon has opened up about losing most of the hearing in his left ear during the making of his latest record Seven Psalms.

The 81-year-old, who recently released his 15th studio album, told The Times that the mysterious hearing loss has left him questioning if he’d ever tour again.

“Quite suddenly, I lost most of the hearing in my left ear, and nobody has an explanation for it,” he said. “So everything became more difficult.”

The musician explained that the loss had left him more frustrated and annoyed than angry at first “because I thought it would pass, it would repair itself.” Simon’s condition, however, has not improved, which could mean that he’d have to give up performing live as time goes by.

“The songs of mine that I don’t want to sing live, I don’t sing them,” he said. “Sometimes there are songs that I like and then at a certain point in a tour, I’ll say, ‘What the f— are you doing, Paul?’ Quite often that would come during ‘You Can Call Me Al.’ I’d think, ‘What are you doing? You’re like a Paul Simon cover band. You should get off the road, go home.’”

Elsewhere in the interview, Simon also talked about how Covid-19 “has left him physically frail”, saying, “Boy, have I been beaten up in these last couple of years.”

Listen to Seven Psalms below.

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