[review + giveaway] When Paul Met Artie: The Story of Simon and Garfunkel by G. Neri and David Litchfield

When it comes to Simon and Garfunkel, three things stand out in my memory: hearing “Homeward Bound” for the first time in a soundproof studio, waiting hours for them to arrive at the airport, and attending their 1968 concert in Honolulu.

I was a big S&G fan back in the day, belonged to a fan club whose sole purpose was to meet every rock group that performed in Hawai’i. We haunted airports and hotel lobbies, camped out overnight to score concert tickets, and sometimes got to meet our idols up close and personal at special events.

The Simon and Garfunkel concert remains in the top 5 of all shows attended in my lifetime. It still stands up against today’s large-venue extravaganzas with the big screens, sophisticated sound systems and light shows. There was just something pure, pristine and utterly transformative about those two voices and acoustic guitar. No need for any high tech razzle dazzle when you have good songs and soul-stirring, transcendent harmony.

When Paul Met Artie: The Story of Simon and Garfunkel, a fab new picture book biography for middle grade readers by G. Neri and David Litchfield (Candlewick, 2018), opens with the famous Central Park reunion concert in September 1981.

Neri describes what it was like for the 500,000 people there to hear those voices live for the first time in ten years:

Two voices
sounding like
autumn and spring
rolled into one,
like snowflakes
falling on barren trees,
or the joyous dance
of summer in the park.
Two voices intertwining,
birds soaring in flight,
pure harmony,
pure delight.
Two voices for the city
of New York.

In a series of free verse poem vignettes (all but one titled after a Simon and Garfunkel song), Neri then chronicles their formative years and early phases of their musical career, starting with their childhood friendship during the 50’s in Queens, New York, to when “The Sound of Silence” hit No. 1 in the Billboard Top 10 countdown in January 1966.

 

Art Garfunkel, left, and Paul Simon in front of the latter’s childhood home at 137-62 70 Road in Kew Gardens Hills, Spring 1975.

 

Paul and Artie grew up within a few blocks of each other in the same Jewish neighborhood, but did not befriend each other until they participated in a sixth grade production of Alice in Wonderland (Paul had heard Artie’s amazing voice in a fourth grade talent show). Up until then, they seemed “opposites in every way.”

One was tall with light, curly hair, while the other was short with dark, straight hair. Artie was a math geek who mostly kept to himself. He knew his perfect-pitch voice was a gift, and enjoyed singing in school stairwells and while walking along neighborhood streets. Paul, the class clown, lived for baseball, taking the lead when it came to organizing neighborhood and schoolyard games.

When they met in sixth grade, they quickly bonded over girls, baseball and music. They got hooked on rock ‘n roll after hearing Elvis in junior high, and listened to the radio for hours on end, singing together in Artie’s basement. They tape recorded themselves to listen for flaws. They experimented with their voices, trying to perfect every sound until they found their “harmonic sweet spot.”

We’ve Got a Groovy Thing Goin’

When Paul turned 13, his father gave him a guitar and he became obsessed, teaching himself new songs till his fingers were raw. At the last junior high dance, Paul and Artie wowed the crowd with their rendition of “Sh-Boom.” Once in high school, they formed (with three other friends) a doo-wop vocal group, the Peptones, joining the wave of neighborhood crooners singing “on street corners, in tunnels and stairwells, parks and playgrounds.”

They soon wrote their first song, “The Girl for Me,” that quickly caught on all over Queens. Heartened by its popularity, they tried to sell the song to music producers in Manhattan with no success.

Rejected but not defeated, they came up with another song after hearing the Everly Brothers. They knew it was something different and special, so they scraped together seven dollars to make a demo in a professional studio. By chance, a record producer heard them singing from a hallway and signed them on the spot. Just 15, they called themselves “Tom and Jerry,” and within a few months, their song, “Hey Schoolgirl,” was on the radio and skyrocketed to the top ten in New York. They were rockabilly stars with a hit record!

Their appearance on American Bandstand gave them national exposure. They rode high during their senior year, playing record hops and dances, selling more and more copies of “Hey Schoolgirl.” Paul felt like everything was turning to gold, as he bought a fancy new electric guitar and red convertible. But still wanting to pursue his old dream of becoming the “Elvis of Queens,” Paul recorded a solo record without telling Artie, causing a rift in their friendship.

After his solo record flopped, Paul tried to mend fences with Artie by working with him on new music. But their second, third, and fourth records failed. Has-beens at age 18, they went their separate ways, attending college and doing solo music projects. But neither was very successful on his own as the rock ‘n roll craze went into a slump.

Bleecker Street

With the renewed interest in folk music and social activism during the 60’s, Paul begins to frequent the clubs in Greenwich Village. After hearing Bob Dylan, he decides to broaden his horizons by moving to Europe. Meanwhile, Artie starts singing in poetry coffee shops in the Bay Area after being inspired by Joan Baez. Paul eventually returns home, bowing to pressure from his parents to enroll in law school.

Years pass, with the two of them totally out of contact — until one fateful day, when Paul and Artie just happen to run into each other on the Queensboro Bridge. They share stories about what they’ve been up to, agreeing that New York is the place to be. In his kitchen, Paul plays a few of his new songs for Artie. One in particular, “He Was My Brother,” about the death of a civil rights activist, impresses Artie, who naturally starts “singing the harmony to Paul’s haunting melody.” And just like that, they are making music together again.

But the assassination of John F. Kennedy throws Paul into a deep depression. He quits law school and retreats to his room to wrestle with his feelings of melancholy. He writes another song that knocks Artie out with “its visions of loneliness and a crumbling society numb to despair.” Artie knows “The Sound of Silence” will change everything.

Columbia Records is also impressed and signs them on. This time, they go by their real names, “Simon and Garfunkel.” But their album, “Wednesday Morning, 3 a.m.,” tanks.

Bearing the familiar weight of failure, Paul returns to England, so he can be a busker and play “for the love of music, not money.” Artie goes back to school — maybe to become an architect or math teacher.

But a year later, something surprising happens. A college radio station in Florida keeps getting requests for “The Sound of Silence.” Same thing happens in Boston. Columbia record producer Tom Wilson gets wind of it and decides to re-release the song by overdubbing it with drums, bass and electric guitar.

Fifteen months after their album failed, “The Sound of Silence” is the No. 1 song in the country. They were well on their way to becoming “one of the most successful and influential music duos in history,” iconic voices of their generation who sold over 100 million records and earned 10 Grammys.

Feelin’ Groovy

Neri’s free verse narrative is compelling and well researched, and as he states in his Afterword, much of the material was extracted from hundreds of S&G interviews and articles. Interesting to note that although Neri was a fan of S&G’s music for many years, he didn’t know the duo had met in grade school until a friend shared a video of Paul performing with his “doppelganger.”

This doppelganger turned out to be Paul’s brother Eddie, who looked EXACTLY like him. After googling Ed Simon, Neri learned how Paul and Artie initially met and felt theirs was a story worth telling: despite a rocky partnership marked by numerous failures, their persistence, talent, and mutual love of music ultimately enabled them to succeed.

David Litchfield’s vibrant illustrations enhance and extend the narrative, beautifully capturing the spirit of the times as well as illuminating key moments in S&G’s evolution from hopeful wannabes to chart-topping stars.

His use of light, in particular, is brilliant. We see not only the bright lights of the big city, but the spotlights on the performers, street lamps, the glare from a television set, bridge lights, car headlights, starlight. There are golden rays of sunlight illuminating the facade of NYC’s Brill Building, the “Mecca of music” where Paul and Artie tried to sell their song. And there’s that all important studio scene, where Paul and Artie stand under one bare light bulb, recording the song that would make them teen rockabilly stars. For that brief moment, lost in their music, they are the only ones in the world.

I especially love the pictures for “Homeward Bound”: On the left side, Artie is shown walking down a moonlit street in New York, while on the opposite page, Paul walks down a London street at sunrise. A wonderful way to depict their separateness, a recurring theme in this story of two people whom we are told at the beginning were “opposites in every way.” (These same two illustrations also appear on the front and back covers of the book under the dust jacket.)

And of course, I love Litchfield’s caricature of Dylan and his acoustic guitar, surrounded by signs and symbols of the sixties. 🙂

When Paul Met Artie is a wonderful way to introduce a new generation of music lovers to these singular artists, and a nice keepsake for Simon and Garfunkel fans of any age. Set against a tuneful backdrop of doo-wop, rock ‘n roll, folk, and folk-rock, this bit of music history, viewed through the lens of two boys from Queens, reinforces the importance of following your passions and never giving up.

Young readers will enjoy reading the story of two musicians who first became stars when they were just teenagers and about what influenced and motivated them. They might find it interesting to learn about a time when radio was king, predating music videos, iTunes, Spotify and all the rest. The life-changing new music Paul and Artie heard on the radio, “something different,/something alive, something rebellious,” made them want to be on the radio too.

The book’s impressive back matter includes An Afterword, Discography, Bibliography and very cool Musical Connections (did you know that hearing a recording of Caruso when Artie was five made him want to sing like a tenor?).

This was a nostalgic read for me, as I remembered my childhood self becoming excited about Elvis and my teen musical obsessions of the 60’s, including both the British invasion and folk music with a social conscience.

I enjoyed recalling the fun I had as a member of that fan club, and I’m glad I got to see Simon and Garfunkel perform when they were at the peak of their popularity. I smiled when I read about Paul playing the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland, because my friends and I had nicknamed him “Bunny Boy.” Ready with Instamatic cameras and flower lei at the airport, we were beyond thrilled when S&G finally deplaned, only to have our hearts broken when the two of them rushed right past us, totally ignoring all their adoring fans. Maybe Bunny Boy was late for an important date. 🙂

Song for the Asking

After all this talk, of course we need to hear a few tunes. Do you have a favorite Simon and Garfunkel song? For me, it might be “America,” “April Come She Will,” “Old Friends,” “Kathy’s Song” — no, too hard to pick a favorite.

But, relevant to the book, here’s “Hey Schoolgirl” (1957) by Tom and Jerry, S&G’s first record and the one that made them teen sensations:

*

“The Sound of Silence” from the Concert in Central Park (1981):

*

“America,” because I love it, but also because it makes me feel sad and wistful. We’re all looking for America now, aren’t we?

*

Finally, to end on a light note: “The 59th Street Bridge Song/Feelin’ Groovy” — in their faces, I can still see two young school chums singing in the basement:

*

 

WHEN PAUL MET ARTIE: The Story of Simon and Garfunkel
written by G. Neri
illustrated by David Litchfield
published by Candlewick, March 2018
Picture Book Biography for ages 8 – 12, 48 pp.
*A Junior Library Guild Selection
**Includes Afterword, Discography, Bibliography, and Musical Connections
***On shelves March 20, 2018

♥️ Click here for more pics, videos and an interview with author G. Neri.

♥️ Read this recent interview with illustrator David Litchfield at Elizabeth Dulemba’s blog.

*

🐰 SPECIAL BOOK GIVEAWAY! 🦊

The publisher is generously providing a copy of WHEN PAUL MET ARTIE for one lucky Alphabet Soup reader. For a chance to win, simply leave a comment at this post telling us what your favorite Simon and Garfunkel song is and why, no later than midnight (EDT) March 21, 2018. You may also enter by sending an email with PAUL & ARTIE in the subject line to: readermail (at) jamakimrattigan (dot) com. Giveaway open to residents of the U.S. and Canada only, please. Good Luck!

*

MR. CRUM’S POTATO PREDICAMENT GIVEAWAY WINNER!

Thanks to all who dropped by to munch and share their favorite kind of potato chips last week. Though you had my mouth watering, I exercised admirable restraint by not rushing out for Dill Pickle, Maui Sweet Onion, or Jalapeno Ranch Chips.

Pleased to announce that the winner of a brand new copy of Mr. Crum’s Potato Predicament is:

🥔 JILL AT RHAPSODY IN BOOKS! 🥔

🎉 CONGRATULATIONS, JILL! 🎈

👏👏👏👏👏

Please send along your snail mail address to receive your book.

(On second thought, maybe I need a little trip to the store for some Cape Cod chips . . . )

*

2018 POETRY MONTH KIDLIT EVENTS ROUNDUP

I will be posting a roundup of kidlit events again this April. If you’re doing something special on your blog and you’d like to be included in the roundup, please send your info and links to: readermail (at) jamakimrattigan (dot) com. Would appreciate your helping to spread the word, too. Thanks!

 

La la la Lovely Linda Baie is hosting the Roundup at TeacherDance. Sashay on over to check out the full menu of poetic goodness being shared in the blogosphere this week. Enjoy your weekend!


WHEN PAUL MET ARTIE. Text copyright © 2018 by G. Neri. Illustrations © 2018 by David Litchfield. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA.

Note: Black and white photos in this post are not included in the book.

* This post contains Amazon Affiliate links. When you purchase something using a link on this site, Jama’s Alphabet Soup receives a small referral fee (at no cost to you). Thank you for your support.

**Copyright © 2018 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

77 thoughts on “[review + giveaway] When Paul Met Artie: The Story of Simon and Garfunkel by G. Neri and David Litchfield

  1. Great review – and I love the illustrations. My favourite Simon and Garfunkle song is El Condor Pasa, because I used to live in Perú and heard the original folk song many, many times over the years!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jama, what a perfect book for you to be showcasing! I love hearing your personal connection, and appreciate you pointing out the light in the art… gorgeous!I Pretty powerful message to young people about unlikely friendship and collaboration… the world needs more of this. Thank you! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes — I’m in favor of unlikely friendships that take hold and blossom into something wonderful. We definitely need more collaboration and cooperation in this world — embrace the differences!

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  3. Marvelous review, Jama. I just shared this recently, also, think it’s a gem for all ages. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing many of the greats, but never saw them in person, sad to say. You don’t need to put me in the drawing, but my favorite has always been “The Sound of Silence”, such perfect sounds from this great pair. Thanks for sharing so much! Love the videos!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Can’t believe it’s been over 40 years since I attended that concert! Wow, I’m really old :). Just goes to show that they must have made quite an impression if I’m still ranking them in my top 5.

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  4. I WANT THAT BOOK.
    Jama, this is such a marvelous review, a marvelous post, and that book looks amazing.

    It’s too painful to pick just one favorite song! I just posted on my blog:

    ~~~~~

    And just because I love Simon and Garfunkel, I’m also sending you directly to Jama Rattigan’s Alphabet Soup, for a review (and giveaway!) of a perfectly delicious picture book bio of the duo.

    Long before Spotify and other diabolically convenient methods of indulging musical obsessions were a thing, I used to tell Atticus that balance in the universe could be achieved by a radio station that played All-Simon-and-Garfunkel-All-The-Time.

    ~~~~~

    Clearly, I cannot pick just one favorite. Although, I will say that SOME of my favorites are America, For Emily Wherever I May Find Her, Kathy’s Song, The Sound of Silence. 🙂 Just too many. 🙂

    Thanks for bringing this book to my attention!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for the blog mention, Karen. I did think of you while writing this post, because I knew you were a big S&G fan too. Your idea of a S&G radio station is the best! I see some of your favorites are the same as mine. I think Art considers Kathy’s Song Paul’s best love song.

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  5. The Two Voices verse says it all! How nice to hear about your fan club, and who needs all those big screens and amplification? Pure, perfect, soul-stirring harmonies are more than enough. I too grew up a big fan of this amazing duo. Gorgeous book- both words and art. Thanks, Jama. Can’t wait to read it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was pretty amazing that just two voices and a guitar could hold an audience spellbound for a couple of hours. Speaking heart to heart is why. I’ll have to share more of my fan club stories sometime. 🙂

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  6. This book is a neon light that splits the night. Great review. S&G are such wonderful crooners, in a way that music is missing in some of the modern pop. It was memory road for me, too, although for me it was part of my college experience, listening to the old folk music where people found their voices. We need those protest songs these days. I love the image of you at the airport in your fan club. So adorable.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, Brenda — some of today’s music lacks the lyricism and melodiousness that I crave. Some of the 60’s protest songs are so relevant now — “when will we ever learn?” Lots of cool stuff happened at that airport. Paul Simon really disappointed us, though. As I recall, Art was a little more aware of his fans that day. How hard would it have been to give a little wave as you’re rushing by for kids who waited HOURS just to get a glimpse of you?

      Liked by 1 person

  7. What a wonderful post, Jama! I loved your descriptions of their music and of your excitement at seeing them. You and I both saw them in the same era; I saw them play in Berkeley in 1965. I can still play (not very well!) their songs on my guitar; those are the first ones I learned, because of their inspiration. Mahalo nui loa for this lovely trip down Memory Lane (Bleecker Street? ;))….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Didn’t know you played the guitar, Margo — now I wonder what other hidden talents you possess? 🙂 Glad you saw S&G live too!

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  8. Beautiful book about one of the best musical groups ever. S&G’s music is timeless. I remember listening to their album, “Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme” over and over. I received it as a present for my Sweet Sixteen. So hard to choose a favourite song, but it would have to be something from that album. Maybe “America,” which seems as relevant today as it was then. No, I’m going to say “Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme,” a protest song with beautiful harmony and counterpoint.

    Thanks for your review, Jama, and for the trip down memory lane.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Jama-j, you always have the BEST song-related picture book reviews. THIS was pure gold. I didn’t know much about these guys, but I feel like I’ll learn a lot from this book!

    We learned the 59th Street Bridge Song for choir in middle school, and I was …mortified — MOR.TI.FIED to have to sing the word “groovy,” it was SO OLDDDDDDD and embarrassing, but I loved the song, in a weird way. We also sang SCARBOROUGH FAIR in high school as an a cappella piece, and it was a lovely earworm, but I still wasn’t hooked. But then…in college, I heard THE SOUND OF SILENCE, and it was over. Hello, darkness, my old friend… That song has was the background music for all of my angst. But, my FAVORITE song of all is I AM AN ISLAND.And the rock feels no pain… and an island never cries… (Are we sensing a theme, here? Numb, angsty music… hm…)

    And now I feel like I need to hear all of the songs you listed in your list. I never heard much of the music they sang as a duo; I am much more familiar with Paul Simon, so I feel out of the loop! But, again – thank you. As long as we remember and celebrate older music, we need never be without it. And I suspect somewhere, some other kid is just waiting to feel both amused and mortified and… “groovy.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Love that you sang their songs for choir. Cracked up to hear that you were mortified about singing the word “groovy.” 😀 It was just a lyric, after all, a lyric to an older song — not a swear word. But I guess if you’re in middle school it could be embarrassing. I remember when that was the coolest word ever — actually sorry that it became passé. Interesting that the word “cool” never goes out of style.

      I guess angst should be your middle name. Dark, brooding, isolationist that you are (me too). I did read recently that S&G’s primary demographic were outsiders — those that didn’t fit in and needed an outlet for their loneliness, people that internalized and tried to cope with more cerebral music. A thinking person’s tunes . . .

      I think you’d like the songs I mentioned — “Kathy’s Song” and “April Come She Will” are wonderfully lyrical. Hard to resist Garfunkel’s angelic voice.

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  10. A Bridge Over Trouble Water has always been my favorite- a song about being a friend who is always there. I still love it. I “met” Paul Simon once as a friend and I ended up in a golf cart driving people back to the parking lot. Of course we wanted to act cool – like we met famous musicians every day, so we just said hello.
    This book looks fabulous. I can’t wait to read it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, happy to hear you had a better experience with Paul Simon in person than I did. Even after all these years, I’m still kind of peeved with him, but I don’t feel bad because I think Art still resents Paul recording that solo record all those years ago. 🙂

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  11. Wow! What a review. How could I not like their music? But now I’m even more inspired by their story. So many times we just see the success of people and pay no attention to the work and persistence that got them there. I’m glad they didn’t give up. As for a favorite song, that’s tough, but I’ll have to go with Bridge Over Troubled Water or The Sound of Silence.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Theirs is indeed a fascinating story. I knew they were childhood friends, but learned more about their Tom and Jerry days from reading this book. Bridge Over Troubled Water has that spiritual quality that moves so many people,and of course Sound of Silence is so iconic (and now still relevant).

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  12. Man oh man, Jama, your music-related posts always bring back such memories for me! Like you, I can’t pick a favorite song, but I will tell you two of my favorite memories. The first is singing The Sound of Silence with my best friend in HS at a school sponsored folk-festival. I sang the Garfunkel part and our ex-hippie Creative Writing teacher played the guitar. The second memory was dancing like mad to “Kodachrome” when we (with same best friend) saw S&G at a reunion concert at Shea stadium in 1983. I’ve been waiting for this book. So excited it’s finally here!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What great memories, Michelle! Love hearing them. Hope you’ll sing for us sometime 🙂 Good to hear you saw S&G live at Shea Stadium!

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  13. Jama, this post was so full of memories for me. Who can forget the iconic duo with their melodic voices singing, “The Sounds of Silence”, one of my favorite tunes from Simon and Garfunkel? “Silence like a cancer grows…my words like silent raindrops fell…Long before you started showing the videos, I was searching for S & G songs and then you showed some. What a totally full experience of book reviewing was this piece. Thank you, Jama, for this beautiful piece of writing

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So happy you enjoyed the post and that it brought back such fond memories, Carol. Many of us have S&G lyrics infused in our DNA. 🙂

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  14. Surprised no one has mentioned The Boxer yet, which is one of my faves. I love so many of the songs people have already mentioned here, so I’ll add a few that I think have gotten sort of lost over the years but are worth a listen:
    Flowers Never Bend with the Rain
    A Hazy Shade of Winter
    Anji
    The Only Living Boy in New York
    Fakin’ It
    My Little Town

    I have been looking for a good book about this duo, because I knew they met in school and started recording very young. Glad to hear about this one!

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    1. Just listened to “The Boxer” yesterday. Haven’t heard the other songs in awhile — thanks for mentioning them — will definitely listen to them again. I also like “The Dangling Conversation.” 🙂

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  15. What a rich review! My now-husband and I saw Simon and Garfunkel in 1983 (just had to look up the year!). What an experience! My favorite song has to be Sound of Silence but there are so many other candidates. It was such fun to learn more about the evolution of their relationship, and as you noted, the illustrations in this book are fabulous. Looks like a winner!

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  16. i didn’t know that they knew each other at such a young age! nor that they had such failure on their journey to the top and how much perservance it took on their part. My favorite is the Sound of Silence due to it’s haunting beauty.

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    1. They started their musical careers very young — some people just seem fated to meet. I wonder if they had pursued music separately all along how far they would have gotten.

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  17. Again, you don’t have to enter me in the contest. I’m off to buy it. I don’t think I could pick a favorite song, anyhow. I love so many of them so much.

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  18. How I love this post, Jama! S&G were the sounds of my youth, the music I often listened to after break ups and when homesick. It was also the music of my children’s youth – I’d play it in the minivan here there and everywhere. I got to see them live just once – at the Central Park concert, which was memorable. They don’t seem to make musicians like these anymore…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Excited to hear you were at the Central Park Concert, Tara!! It’s one of those landmark musical events I wish I could have experienced.

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  19. Paul looks soooo young as “Tom and Jerry.” The story of their success is inspiring and surprising — all that music that almost didn’t get made! Thanks, Jama.

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  20. Oh, I used to listen to their Greatest Hits album all the time! My first instinct is to pick “The Sound of Silence,” but then someone mentioned “El Condor Pasa” and I switched, and then “Scarborough Fair” and I changed my mind again… I also like “The Boxer.” Although “Bridge Over Troubled Water” is not my favorite, I remember one dark night I was driving through L.A. just feeling really discouraged and miserable. Then “Bridge Over Troubled Water” came on the radio: it gave me so much heart and comfort in that moment. The book looks lovely, also fun! Thanks for another marvelous post, Jama.

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  21. Love the review! I’m Emily, I’m 16 years old and I have been listening to Simon and Garfunkel ever since my mum introduced me to them when I was around 7. Their music means the world to me, and I’m excited that I actually have tickets to see Paul Simon in Amsterdam in July! As for my favourite Simon and Garfunkel song: it’s so difficult to choose! I would probably have to say Bleecker Street, although it’s difficult to explain why. I cry every time I listen to it, it’s just such a euphoric feeling that’s so hard to put into words. I’m also a fan of Only Living Boy in New York, Bridge Over Troubled Water (of course) and A Poem on the Underground Wall. Anyway, thanks so much for writing this review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Emily!! Thanks for the nice comment. Excited to hear you’re a big S&G fan too. Wonderful that you’re going to see Paul Simon this summer (it’s part of his farewell tour, right?).

      I can see why you like Bleecker Street. It conjures up vivid images and makes me feel nostalgic and wistful. Your other choices are good too — but of course it’s impossible to choose just one favorite. I love that S&G have songs for different moods. 🙂

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  22. I love this post! I did not know about the background of Paul and Art. I loved them when they were popular, and I play them today. I love The Boxer, America, Old Friends, The Sound of Silence, and I can’t remember the name but the one with Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard. I was crying during the reunion concert in Central Park. I didn’t see it in person, but I think PBS played it.

    I want this book for myself! And then to share with a special child of course. The art is amazing as is the bit of poetry. Sad to see the contest is over so quickly – I was too busy to read the column until yesterday.

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    1. Hi Janet! Good to hear from another devoted S&G fan. I love all the songs you mentioned too, and also found the Concert in Central Park to be an emotional experience even if I wasn’t there in person. I guess since we all know about their turbulent relationship, whenever they do get back together to perform it’s extra special. Also, their songs take me right back to the 60’s — all those memories. A turbulent era, but also amazing when it came to artistic expression.

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  23. I listened to S/G so much in high school that they are practically part of my DNA. I know what you mean about the power of low-tech concerts. I heard John Denver at Redrocks. Magical.

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  24. I love everything about this post, Jama! I have been a S & G fan for as long as I can remember. I never got to see them live in concert. My favorite is “The Sounds of Silence.” It’s amazing just how relevant it is in these times. Thank you for all the photos too. I’m so glad I stopped by today!

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  25. I lovelovelove this post. I grew up on Simon and Garfunkel – I listen to these songs during lazy Sunday afternoons. This book is going to my To-Read stack especially since it fits our upcoming reading theme! Whee! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like picturing you on a lazy Sunday afternoon listening to S&G. Somehow, though, I sense you’re busy doing something else at the same time. Energizer Bunny!

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  26. A fabulous post about one of the most remarkable musical duo ever. My favourite S & G song is The Dangling Conversation. Why? I believe, like most of their songs, it was ahead of its time and defines human condition in the 21st century with compelling precision.

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  27. It’s really hard to pick my favorite, but I think it’s the 59th Street Bridge Song. “Dappled and drowsy and ready for sleep…” Ruth, thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

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  28. What a great post! This book looks wonderful and I love seeing the long ago pictures of ‘Tom and Jerry.’ It’s very hard to narrow down, but I think I’ll choose “Scarborough Fair” for one of my favorite songs. Paul Simon performed at my son’s college graduation. I think I was more excited about that than the graduation itself. 🙂

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