What’s up with Paul Simon and Edie Brickell, anyway?

 

What a bizarre situation this is with Paul Simon and Edie Brickell.

Saturday night, Brickell’s mother calls 911 and promptly hangs up. Police are dispatched to the couple’s New Canaan, Conn., home. An officer shows up and charges them with misdemeanor disorderly conduct but declines to book them, instead making an “arrest by summons,” which required them to appear before a judge Monday at Norwalk Superior Court.

They show up, hold hands before judge William Wenzel, and essentially inform him, “Nothing to see here.” One of them pushed the other. We don’t know who pushed whom. “On a scale of one to 10, it was a one,” said the couple’s attorney, Allan Cramer, who told reporters that Simon was trying to leave their cottage, and Brickell tried to block the door.

Oooooooooookay.

In the wacky world in which we now live, where guerrilla publicity is de rigueur, this could conceivably be considered normal. It’s an actual media strategy that’s routinely deployed when an artist has something to promote: Do something nutty that possibly results in arrest. Get the media talking about it. Agree to interviews. Refuse to talk about the nutty thing you did, and insist you only want to talk about “the work.”

But Simon and Brickel, 48, aren’t Z-list celebrities clamoring for a bit of fame. Simon, 72, is one of the most well-respected icons of American music. He’s been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. He’s the Simon half of Simon & Garfunkel. He’s been honored by the Kennedy Center and the Library of Congress. Brickell, of the New Bohemians, hasn’t done too badly herself; she just won a Grammy with Steve Martin. They’ve been married for 22 years, they live in a sleepy outpost of New York that’s also home to Harry Connick, Jr. and NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams, and neither is promoting an album.

So what gives?

“I got my feelings hurt and I picked a fight with my husband,” Brickell said in a statement released to the media through her attorney.  “The police called it disorderly.  Thank God it’s orderly now.”

They’re due back in court May 16.

h/t Hartford Courant

Soraya Nadia McDonald covers arts, entertainment and culture for the Washington Post with a focus on race and gender issues.
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