♫ Sounds of Silence ♫

I have the sounds of booming fireworks reverberating through my head and chest … hours and hours they boomed here in da hood.  What is wrong with people?  1:00 a.m., and still they are booming.  Silence.  All I ask for is a bit of silence.  And then it hits me … Echo, the sounds of silence … where have I heard that before???  Ahhhh … the  💡 comes on … Simon & Garfunkel, circa 1965.  I first played this song almost exactly a year ago, July 18, 2018.  Perhaps this should be my forever July 4th song, yes?  Apologies that I have no trivia to accompany tonights selection, but … it is late, I am exhausted, and my bed is calling.

The Sound of Silence
Simon & Garfunkel
Produced by Tom Wilson

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 share
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 reach 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 sound of silence.”

Songwriters: Paul Simon
The Sound of Silence lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

31 thoughts on “♫ Sounds of Silence ♫

  1. On of my all time favorite songs. I did not know that the original release was a flop, and their manager remixed it with additional instruments without their consent! Of course the rest is history, but I always found their original acoustic “unplugged” version to be the most profound and enduring.
    Let me know what you think of this recent cover by Disturbed:

    Cheers! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This song has been relevant for quite a number of years now, Jill. It describes the failings of the modern human race perfectly and reduces me to tears every time I hear or sing it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You are the second person who said she cried every time she heard it … Emily said the same, and like you, she is a very kind and caring young woman. Being mostly deaf, I only know part of the words, so it is mostly only the music I hear, else I might be the same.

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      • Of course I was an impressionable teen when I forst heard it, and even without yet fully understanding the impact of the words, I could feel the vibration of its urging. I was a teen during the Watergate mess and so politics hit home for me early on. I actually refused to vote the first few years that I could, feeling (as I still do to some extent) that politics, in and of itself, requires deception and insincerity to function. Sad.

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        • It’s interesting that the political climate of the era when we are young and impressionable, just beginning to form our own opinions, so largely impacts our views later in life. You’re quite right about politics, but as you know now, we must participate, else we are left completely out in the cold.

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  3. Hope the noises went away at last. This was S&G’s first Canadian hit, if not their first hit everywhere. A beautiful vocal duo. I have always loved them, but for some reason I don’t listen to them much anymore. I wonder why?

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    • Finally, just after 1:00 a.m. they did. I think it may be their first hit period, but according to David’s info, it wasn’t a hit in the beginning. I find that to be the case with several bands … when I stumble across one that I used to love, I think, “I wonder why I never listen to them anymore”? We’re old and forgetful is the only reason I can come up with.

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  4. Jill, I just finished Paul Simon’s biography and he echoes what David wrote above. I found it interesting that Simon went to England as he was better received there as people did not know how to categorize him in the US. Simon said the folk music crowd did not embrace him as he was from Brooklyn and he was not rock-n-roll enough for other audiences. Plus, he got to play and tour around England writing good songs and trying them out before recording them with Garfunkel. What amazed me about his talent is he not only could write good songs, he knew how to record them to make them better. It is ironic that the “Sounds of Silence” got remixed without his involvement.

    His career post Garfunkel is amazing as well as he broke new ground. But, I must confess “The Boxer” is my favorite song that he wrote. He and Garfunkel harmonized so well. Keith

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    • I’ll have to check out Simon’s biography! Also, thanks for reminding me of The Boxer! I’ve now added it to my list, for it is yet another favourite of mine. I was surprised, as well, to see that the remix was done without their knowledge … seems it would be a copyright violation, but what do I know? Glad you liked the song!

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  5. One of the biggest regrets in my life is that S & G broke up far too soon. They were genius songwriters and impeccable performers. They must have had much more music in them to share with us as a duo rather than individual artistes.

    Jill’s usual bit…… “The Sound of Silence”, originally “The Sounds of Silence”, is a song by the American music duo Simon & Garfunkel. The song was written by Paul Simon over several months in 1963 and 1964. A studio audition led to the duo signing a record deal with Columbia Records, and the song was recorded in March 1964 at Columbia Studios in New York City for inclusion on their debut album, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M..

    Released in October 19th 1964,[2] the album was a commercial failure and led to the duo breaking apart, with Simon returning to England and Art Garfunkel to his studies at Columbia University. In 1965, the song began to attract airplay at radio stations in Boston, Massachusetts, and throughout Florida.[citation needed][vague] The growing airplay led Tom Wilson, the song’s producer, to remix the track, overdubbing electric instruments and drums. Simon & Garfunkel were not informed of the song’s remix until after its release. The single was released in September 1965.

    The song hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the week ending January 1, 1966, leading the duo to reunite and hastily record their second album, which Columbia titled Sounds of Silence in an attempt to capitalize on the song’s success. The song was a top-ten hit in multiple countries worldwide, among them Australia, Austria, West Germany, Japan and the Netherlands. Generally considered a classic folk rock song, the song was added to the National Recording Registry in the Library of Congress for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically important” in 2012 along with the rest of the Sounds of Silence album.

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    • Thank you so much, dearest, for providing the trivia on this one!!! I appreciate it greatly! Interesting, too … I had no idea this song was at first a failure, nor was I aware of the remix being done without their knowledge. I’m glad I played one you liked this time, and thanks again for filling in the gap!

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