Sep 15, 2012

By Bob Sheppard

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Paul Simon probably never had a vocal partner quite like Bobby McFerrin, who coaxed him onstage in an impromptu New York City performance that highlighted opening night of Jazz at Lincoln Center’s 25th anniversary season.

McFerrin spotted Simon in the audience Thursday night and invited him to join in some “improv” on the old Simon and Garfunkel hit “Scarborough Fair.” Simon initially declined, but eventually gave in.

Simon asked good-naturedly “How could you do that to me,” as he joined McFerrin onstage at the Rose Theater for an unexpected guest turn.

Simon quickly adjusted to McFerrin’s loose, irreverent style as they adapted their singing to saxophonist Ted Nash’s arrangement of the Simon song for the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.


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