song title=”Mrs. Robinson”
performer=Simon & Garfunkel
Album=Simon & Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits
Recording Source=iTunes® by Apple®
Download hardware=Apple® iBook G4
Intellectual Rights=SONY® MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT INC., 1972
Bit Rate=128 kbps
Sample Rate=44.100 kHz
Special Event=from Paul Simon’s soundtrack for the film “The Graduate”
Beats per trial=688
Total Time Elapsed=2,027.13 seconds
Mean Time per Trial=225.237 seconds
average beat length=0.327 seconds
Average Standard Tempo/Mean speed=183.3 beats per minute
I had the idea to calibrate this song while I was, excuse the phrase, sitting on a sofa on a Sunday afternoon. I was, as mentioned in the song, literally ‘going to a candidate’s debate’ with ubiquity in the mediasphere and the blogosphere – going full out, watching Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama make compelling cases for themselves. I was also thinking about the past, making it all rose-colored and great, as the brain has a way of releasing most pain memory.
This is a tricky song, in terms of rhythm. I propose on the top that the speed of the beat be counted with eighth notes and not the usual quarter notes. Why is this ‘tricky’? Because the rhythm works on two speed levels. The more driving, pronounced rhythm is the faster, hard driving “du du du du du du, du du du du du, du du du du”s [sp] which open up the vocal as beat. Behind the hard driving 183.3 beats per minute is the half speed quarter note rhythm section groove, where bass drum and snare drum notes are literally playing at half the speed of Paul Simon’s twice-as-fast acoustic guitar and Garfunkel’s similarly twice-as-fast “du du du du du du du du du du du du du du” [sp]s.
Playing with the rhythm of the speed as the verse turns into the bridge and then the chorus – though one woman’s bridge is another man’s chorus! – Paul Simon was an innovator that was to be seen in the songs of the Police and the ground breaking percussion composition of drummer Stewart Copeland.
“Mrs. Robinson” – Meanspeed® Music Tempo Graph ® 2009
Sting gets *complete* songwriting credit on some songs where Stewart’s drum compositions are more important, or at least *as* important as the guitar playing as that of an Andy “Andrew” Summers.
I was curious as to what the song *meant* – because if I posted the lyrics and pointed to where each beat comes by number, I would be breaking the law in front of the cyberworld and beyond, so I do not do that. I am not beyond checking out the supposedly legal sites out these that get the clandestine “Kevin” to send in the lyrics illegally, songmeanings.net illegally republished them for profit, and laugh in Paul Simon’s face. I’d love to see that team over their laugh to his *real* face – then again, they don’t seem the type that with whom Paul would spend any time talking.
/Ian Andrew Schneider/
revised Friday, April 15, 2016