Paul Simon has lost almost all of his hearing in his left ear

Photo credit: Matthew Straubmuller / CC from 2.0

Paul Simon reveals in a new interview that he almost lost his hearing in his left ear – and nobody has an explanation for it.

Legendary musician Paul Simon revealed this in a new interview The times that he had lost almost all of his hearing in his left ear, making future live performances unlikely.

“All of a sudden I lost most of the hearing in my left ear and nobody has an explanation for that,” says Simon, who retired from touring in 2018. “So everything became more difficult. My reaction to this was frustration and anger; Not quite mad yet because I thought it would pass, (that) it would fix itself.”

While his hearing has yet to regenerate, Simon continues to make new music. Last week he shared a new project titled Seven Psalms, a seven-movement composition intended to be heard as a piece of music rather than as an album. Simon also had a surprise performance at the Newport Folk Festival last year.

But he’s not upset about his hearing loss just yet – maybe because he admits he sometimes gets tired of his own songs on tour.

“I don’t sing my songs that I don’t want to sing live. Sometimes there are songs I like, and then at a certain point on a tour I’m like, ‘What the hell are you doing, Paul?'” the singer half-jokes. “A lot of times that was during ‘You Can Call Me Al’. I thought, “What are you doing?” You’re like a Paul Simon cover band. You should leave the street; go home.'”

Last year Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl open about his own hearing loss – partly due to tinnitus – and half-jokingly admits to Howard Stern that he’s “fucking deaf”.

“I’ve been lip reading for about 20 years. I’m a rock musician,” said Dave Grohl. “I can’t hear what you’re saying.”