Kodak required the album to note that Kodachrome is a trademark of Kodak and to include the registered trademark symbol (®) after the song's title. The 2012 release Paul Simon Live In New York City, which includes a live performance of "Kodachrome", does not include the symbol or the trademark statement. This may be because Kodak discontinued production of Kodachrome in 2009.
In the late 1990s, Kodak used the song in commercials to sell film.
The lyrics to this song on There Goes Rhymin' Simon differed in wording from those on the The Concert in Central Park (1982) and Paul Simon's Concert in the Park, August 15, 1991 albums. The former (the album) said, "...everything looks worse in black and white," but the latter (the concerts) said, "...everything looks better in black and white." While it might be easy to read into the change in lyrics, Simon said, "I can't remember which way I originally wrote it -- 'better' or 'worse' -- but I always change it....'Kodachrome' was a song that was originally called 'Goin' Home.'"
In an interview conducted in November 2008, Simon said that what he had in mind when writing the song was to call it "Going Home". However, finding this would have been "too conventional", he came up with "Kodachrome", because of its similar sound and larger innovative potential. He also refers to its first line as the "most interesting" part of the song.