All posts tagged: Simon & Garfunkel

Artie makes eye contact while Paul looks past you. (Sony)

The #1 Albums: Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water”

Several songs on Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water seem so perfect it’s as though they must always have existed. Surely the title song, “El Condor Pasa,” and “The Boxer” waited somewhere in the ether to be revealed at a propitious moment in history. Right? Not quite. The album was coaxed forth over a difficult year by two old friends whose partnership was beginning to dissolve. The creation of the title song captures the tension in microcosm: first, they disagreed over who should sing it. Garfunkel didn’t want to but Simon persuaded him—only to regret in later years that he doesn’t appear on the duo’s most famous song. Garfunkel thought the song needed a third verse, so Simon wrote one, even as he believed it didn’t measure up to the first two. In the end, it would take them two months to finish the song, emblematic of the sporadic nature of their work together by this time. Even when the album was done, the tension remained. Thinking of adding a song to pad the …

Simon and Garfunkel, from the "Bookends" cover (Sony Music Entertainment)

The #1 Albums: Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Graduate” and “Bookends”

There was nothing hippie about Simon and Garfunkel, really. Among the general run of late 60s pop stars, they were remarkably straight. That’s not to say they didn’t appeal to stoners. On the contrary: lyrics as dense and literary as theirs were undoubtedly parsed by many a group of chemically altered heads on many a chemically altered night. Pure, clear voices, virtuoso musicianship, impeccable production—they were the thinking person’s pop stars, at a moment when most young people considered themselves thinkers. Film director Mike Nichols liked Simon and Garfunkel and asked to use their music in The Graduate. Stories vary—either Nichols rejected some of the songs Simon offered, or Simon managed to write only a couple in time for them to be included in the film. Only about eight of the soundtrack album’s 36 minutes represent new S&G material; there are two snippets of “Mrs. Robinson,” each running a little over a minute. Older tunes, “The Sound of Silence” and “Scarborough Fair/Canticle,” each appear twice (in different versions). The album also contains six pieces of …

Popdose Giveaway: Simon & Garfunkel “Bridge Over Troubled Water: 40th Anniversary Edition”

We have the chance for you to win a copy of this mighty fine reissue of Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon & Garfunkel. For your chance to grab the set, send Michael Parr an email with “John Parr” in the subject line and ask him why he’s scared to interview the ’80s pop icon who happens to be a distant blood relative?  Feel free to be creative with your emails – we’ll pick a winner on Friday! You know, we dissect a lot of new releases and reissues from classic artists around these parts including more recently, Live at Shea Stadium by Billy Joel. While there is often quite a bit of debate about these releases, I don’t think you’ll find much argument regarding the recently released 40th anniversary edition of Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon & Garfunkel – it’s awesome.

The Popdose Holiday Mixtape 2010

Last Christmas, we gave you our heart, but you were too busy doing real stuff. Hey, it’s perfectly understandable. We launched a “special gift” on Christmas morning 2009 with zero fanfare. Is it any wonder that so few knew something was waiting for them under the Internet tree? And so the year passed into the next, and in-between, several computer failures, server dumps, and general “life-stuff” threatened files and made the prospect for a more, shall we say, extroverted return of the mega-mix in question near impossible. Near, but not quite there. At one point or another, a lightbulb clicked on somewhere and someone decided to put the contents on a DVD-R. They did not have the insight to actually label the disc though, so it was only by happenstance, wishbones and a couple favorable fortune cookies that the contents were recovered. And so, with a bang and not a whimper, we’ve decided to present all of y’all with a big, fat holiday gift early. How about this for a premise — the members of …

CD Review: Simon & Garfunkel, “Live 1969”

Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel gave the world something that has never been fully recognized, I think. Now, I enjoy folk music and several of its most recognizable proponents, but I cannot deny the inherent sanctimony of a lot of Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan’s most famous tunes. Sure, these were protest songs, and the subjective “us versus them” attitude was an obvious tack, but over time, some of these songs lost luster. Some lost it because of modern cynicism: “Yes, you’re outraged over this Tower of Babel. Where were you when it was being built? Is singing about it all you can do now?” Others lost it because of an overbearing quaintness, hymns to Ralph Waldo Emerson that smacked of being so out of touch, they might as well be alien transmissions. So when Simon & Garfunkel burst on the scene, they freed up the voice and acoustic guitar from the tyranny of the right-minded (or the left, thinking politically). Their songs could be political, but they could also be nonsensical, traditional, …