Thursday, November 24, 2011

Still Crazy In A Turkey Outfit

Paul Simon, an unhappy turkey
One of the best SNL's ever, November 1976. Paul Simon walks out on stage, dressed as a giant turkey. He starts singing "Still Crazy After All These Years," but stops and addresses the bandleader.
Paul Simon: Cut it. Forget it. Forget it, Richard. [ turns to the audience ] You know, I said, when the turkey concept was first brought up, I said there's a very good chance I'm gonna end up looking stupid if I come out wearing it. I mean, everyone said, "Oh, it's Thanksgiving, go ahead." You know, I felt it was not in any way in keeping with my image, the lyrics, "The Boxer", any of these songs. They said, "Hey, you know, you take yourself soooo seriously. Why don't you stop taking yourself soooo seriously for a while and loosen up a little bit, and maybe people will laugh. You want to be Mr. Alienation, you can be Mr. Alienation." Well, I didn't want to be Mr. Alienation. I want to be a regular guy, but I feel this has just been a disaster. I'm sorry. I'm just gonna go and change." He  leaves the stage and walks out of the studio, toward his dressing room. Lorne Michaels waits in the corridor, clapping.
Lorne Michaels: Wonderful!
Paul Simon: You call that wonderful?
Lorne Michaels: What? You had a problem?
Paul Simon: That was one of the most humiliating experiences of my life!
Lorne Michaels: What? The band came in late?
Paul Simon: The band was fine! It's not the band!
Lorne Michaels: I don't understand what the problem is.
Paul Simon: The problem is, I'm singing "Still Crazy" in a turkey outfit. Well, would you like to sing in a turkey outfit?
Lorne Michaels: I thought it worked great!
Paul Simon: Yeah? What do I look like, Jan Michael Vincent, here? You think I'm looking good?
Lorne Michaels: You look great! Honestly! Why don't you just go change.
Paul Simon: Yeah, let's just do that. Let's just say it was a difference of opinion.
Lorne Michaels: Okay, maybe it was a difference of opinion, but I think it worked great. [ Paul tries to exit to the hallway, as Lorne faces the camera ] We'll be right back after this following message.
Paul Simon: [ stuck in door frame ] I can't fit through the door!
Lorne Michaels: [ rolling his eyes ] Alright, I'm coming.

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