April 25, 1999

On this day in 1999, Yankee Stadium celebrated Joe DiMaggio Day with Paul Simon performing ‘Mrs. Robinson’, which contains the classic line, “Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?”

April25

A few years after ‘Mrs. Robinson’ became No. 1 on the charts, Paul Simon had this to say about his experience with the song and Joe DiMaggio..

“I found myself dining at an Italian restaurant where DiMaggio was seated with a party of friends. I’d heard a rumor that he was upset with the song and had considered a lawsuit, so it was with some trepidation that I walked over and introduced myself as its composer. I needn’t have worried: he was perfectly cordial and invited me to sit down, whereupon we immediately fell into conversation about the only subject we had in common.”

 

”What I don’t understand,” he said, ”is why you ask where I’ve gone. I just did a Mr. Coffee commercial, I’m a spokesman for the Bowery Savings Bank and I haven’t gone anywhere.”

“I said that I didn’t mean the lines literally, that I thought of him as an American hero and that genuine heroes were in short supply. He accepted the explanation and thanked me. We shook hands and said good night.”

 

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