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Paul Simon to retire from touring 'after all these years'

by Corky Siemaszko /
Paul Simon takes the stage to perform at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on July 25, 2016.Paul Sancya / AP file

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Paul Simon is slip slidin’ away.

The beloved singer-songwriter announced Monday he was retiring from the road and this spring his aptly-named “Homeward Bound — The Farewell Tour” will be his last.

“I’ve often wondered what it would feel like to reach the point where I’d consider bringing my performing career to a natural end,” Simon wrote in a statement. “Now I know: It feels a little unsettling, a touch exhilarating and something of a relief.”

Simon said he still loves “making music” and that his voice is “still strong and my band is tight.”

“I think about music constantly,” he wrote. “I am very grateful for a fulfilling career and, of course, most of all to the audiences who heard something in my music that touched their hearts.”

Simon said the recent death of his longtime guitarist Vincent N’guini was a “contributing factor” in his decision to stop touring.

“Mostly, though, I feel the travel and time away from my family takes a toll that detracts from the joy playing,” he wrote.

Simon, 76, said he still expects to do the “occasional performance in a (hopefully) pristine hall” and will donate the proceedings to philanthropies “whose objective is to save the planet, ecologically.” His farewell tour kicks off May 16 in Vancouver, Canada, and is expected to wrap up on June 20 in Nashville.

A native of Newark, New Jersey, Simon first rose to prominence in the 1960s as part of the duo “Simon & Garfunkel” with songs like “Sounds of Silence,” “Mrs. Robinson” and “Bridge Over Troubled Water” that became part of the soundtrack for the Baby Boomer generation.

After splitting with Art Garfunkel, Simon went on to have a successful solo career, crafting iconic songs like “Slip Slidin’ Away,” “Still Crazy After All These Years,” “Kodachrome” and many others.

Simon and his wife, singer Edie Brickell, have three children. The couple hit some troubled marital waters in 2014 when a shoving match inside their New Canaan, Connecticut, home resulted in both being arrested for disorderly conduct. The couple quickly reconciled and remain together.

It is Simon's third marriage. His second wife, "Star Wars" actress Carrie Fisher, died in December 2016.

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