Simon & Garfunkel

Paul Simon & Art Garfunkel

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Paul Simon & Art Garfunkel Review

by William Ruhlmann

This album is credited to Paul Simon & Art Garfunkel, not to "Simon & Garfunkel," which is appropriate since it contains no recordings made by the duo as the folk-rock entity responsible for "The Sound of Silence" and other hits of the '60s and early ‘70s. In fact, many of the tracks are by Simon or Garfunkel alone, and when they do perform together, it is as their teenage duo Tom & Jerry, who scored a number 49 chart entry in the winter of 1957-1958 with the Everly Brothers-like "Hey, Schoolgirl." Simon, under the name Jerry Landis, later got into the bottom of the Billboard Hot 100 with "The Lone Teen Ranger," a Jan & Dean knockoff, in early 1963, only a year before Simon & Garfunkel turned so philosophical on "The Sound of Silence." In between "Hey, Schoolgirl" and "The Lone Teen Ranger," Simon & Garfunkel, separately and together, made many attempts to score pop hits with songs in popular styles of the late ‘50s and early ‘60s. Garfunkel, as Artie Garr or Tom Graph, used his angelic tenor in the service of dreamy ballads ("Dream Alone," "Dreams Can Come True"), while Simon was more versatile, even doing a convincing Elvis Presley imitation in the guise of True Taylor with the single "Teenage Fool"/"True or False." On this and many other albums of this material that have appeared over the years, it is entertaining to hear the team later responsible for such serious fare as "Bridge over Troubled Water" spending their teens looking for Brill Building-style hits, as long as the consumer doesn't pick this disc up expecting to hear the mature Simon & Garfunkel.

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