Paul Simon Had to Explain to Joe DiMaggio That He Wasn’t Dissing Him in “Mrs. Robinson”
Paul Simon once had to explain to Joe DiMaggio that he wasn’t dissing him in “Mrs. Robinson”…when he sang, quote, “Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you. What’s that you say, Mrs. Robinson, Joltin’ Joe has left and gone away?”
In a new interview, Paul says that he bumped into Joe at a restaurant one time…and went over to say hi. Paul says, quote, “He said, ‘Why’d you say that? I’m here, everyone knows I’m here.’
“I said, ‘I don’t mean it that way…I meant, where are these great heroes now?’ He was flattered once he understood that it was meant to be flattering.”
Paul adds that Mickey Mantle once asked him why he didn’t name-check HIM, and Paul said it’s because his name had, quote, “the wrong amount of syllables.”
Revisit “Mrs. Robinson”, here. The Joe line comes at the 3:00 mark:
It’s unclear when Paul met Joltin’ Joe…but Joe died in 1999.