Simon & Garfunkel were an American folk rock duo consisting of guitarist/singer-songwriter Paul Simon and singer Art Garfunkel. The duo first met as children in Kew Gardens Hills, Queens, New York in 1953, where they first learned to harmonize with one another and began writing original material. By 1957, the teenagers had their first minor success with "Hey Schoolgirl", a song imitating their idols the Everly Brothers. Afterwards, the duo went their separate ways, with Simon pursuing unsuccessful solo records and both attending college. In 1963, with a greater interest in folk music, they regrouped and were signed to Columbia Records. Their debut, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M., sold poorly, and they once again disbanded, with Simon moving to England to again perform solo.
A remix of their song "The Sound of Silence" gained airplay on U.S. radio in 1965, hitting number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Simon & Garfunkel reunited, releasing their second studio album Sounds of Silence and touring colleges nationwide. Their third release, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme (1966), found the duo assuming more creative control. Their music was featured in the 1967 film The Graduate, propelling the duo to further exposure. Bookends (1968), their next album, benefited from this promotion, and increased their profile. Their often rocky relationship led to artistic disagreements, resulting in their 1970 breakup. Their final studio record, Bridge Over Troubled Water, was subsequently their most successful, becoming one of the world's best-selling albums.
Simon & Garfunkel were one of the most popular artists of the 1960s, and were viewed as counterculture icons of the decade's social revolution, alongside artists such as the Beatles and Bob Dylan. Their biggest hits—including "I Am a Rock" (1965), "Homeward Bound" (1965), "Scarborough Fair/Canticle" (1966), "A Hazy Shade of Winter" (1966), "Mrs. Robinson" (1968), "Bridge over Troubled Water" (1969), "The Boxer" (1969), and "Cecilia" (1969)—reached number one on several charts worldwide. They have reunited several times since their split, most famously for 1981's "The Concert in Central Park", which attracted more than 500,000 people, making it one of the most attended concerts ever.
Simon and Garfunkel's song Bridge Over Troubled Water is ranked #30 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of Rock & Roll.
50s, 60s Hits
Sounds Of Silence
Sounds of Silence
"The Sound of Silence" is a song by singer-songwriter duo Simon & Garfunkel. Written in February 1964 by Paul Simon in the aftermath of the 1963 assassination of John F. Kennedy, the song propelled the group to mainstream popularity.
Hello darkness, my old friend;
I've come to talk with you again.
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains within the sound of silence.
In restless dreams I walked alone,
Narrow streets of cobblestone.
'Neath the halo of a street lamp,
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
That split the night, and touched the sound of silence.
And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more.
People talking without speaking,
People hearing without listening,
People writing songs that voices never shared.
And no one dared disturb the sound of silence.
"Fools," said I, "You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows.
Hear my words that I might teach you,
Take my arms that I might lead you."
But my words like silent raindrops fell,
And echoed in the wells of silence.
And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made.
And the sign flashed out its warning,
In the words that it was forming.
And the sign said, "The words of the prophets
are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls, and whispered in the sounds of silence."