Enduring songwriters

Critic's choice: Pop music

July 11, 1999|By J.D. Considine

Back in 1966, Paul Simon cut a song for the Simon and Garfunkel album, "Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme," called "A Simple Desultory Philippic (Or How I Was Robert McNamara'd Into Submission)." Between its mannered, drawling delivery and the wheezing harmonica interjections, the track was a brutal mockery of the Bob Dylan aesthetic, right down to the last verse where Simon whines, "I dropped my harmonica, Albert." ("Albert" was a reference to Dylan's manager, Albert Grossman.)

Dylan never commented on the song, and if there were any hard feelings, they've long since passed. In fact, Dylan and Simon are now touring together, dividing the evening into two individual, career-overview sets, then capping the show with a couple of duets. The times may be a-changin', but the quality of Simon and Dylan's songwriting endures.

Friday, July 16, 7:30 p.m., at the Nissan Pavilion in Bristow, Va. Tickets are $87.50, $57.50 and $30. Call 410-481-7328.

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