I’ve always felt sorry for Art Garfunkel because its always felt like he’s gotten a raw deal from the music world. While Paul Simon has basked in the limelight for decades, poor Art could probably walk down the street and go completely unnoticed by the majority of Americans. On further examination though you see that he’s lived the typical rock star life, with both ups and downs.
He teams up with his friend from childhood, Paul Simon, and made their first record that went nowhere. So he and Simon broke up, Simon moved to the U.K., and while he was overseas some stations started playing a song, “The Sounds of Silence”, off of their first album, but instead of the way that they’d written it their producer took Bob Dylan’s band and overdubbed it with electric guitars. “The Sounds of Silence” went to #1.
So to capitalize on their success Simon came back to the U.S. and they toured and made a lot of money but it all came crashing down when Garfunkel’s solo efforts (Simon also was doing solo material) didn’t chart as high as Simon’s and he started to drop out of the spotlight. That was followed by more albums that failed to hardly chart and he dropped into fits of depression. Even after teaming back up with Simon he was mixed out of an album that was supposed to be jointly released by the two of them (Simon’s Hearts and Bones) and before long he was scraping for what seemed like Simon’s table scraps.
The worst part about his whole musical career? He never wrote any of the songs he and Paul Simon sang together; he was just a singer, a good one, but not a songwriter. It wasn’t until 2003 that he released his first album of songs that he wrote (Everything Waits to Be Noticed).
He’s tried acting, poetry and he’s gone through the suicides of several people close to him. Probably in spite of all of what’s happened to him we ought to call him a semi-failed Renaissance man, albeit a semi-failed Renaissance man whose made a truckloads of money.
So Art, after all these years I salute you. You’ve never given up. Keep on truckin’.