♫ Bridge Over Troubled Water ♫ (Redux)

Today I am depressed, my mind jumbled by the level of utter ignorance and cruelty in the nation where I live.  I played this one back in 2018 and again in 2020, but … it just seems so appropriate for the current times that I’m playing it again.  These days I feel that we are living under a bridge over troubled waters with no shoreline in sight.


Did you know that Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel met in grade school when they both appeared in a production of Alice in Wonderland. Paul was the White Rabbit and Art was the Cheshire Cat.  They began recording together in high school as Tom and Jerry — yes, as in the cartoon cat and mouse.

Simon and Garfunkel split up in 1970, and Garfunkel went on to become a math teacher at a private school in Connecticut.

The album, Bridge Over Troubled Water, was the last the duo recorded together before their breakup, and it remains, to this day, the biggest selling album ever for Columbia Records.  Paul wrote the title song, although Art Garfunkel sang it alone.  It was one of the few songs to top the US and UK charts at the same time. It was #1 in the US for six weeks, #1 in the UK for three.

In 1971, this won five Grammy Awards: Song of the Year, Record of the Year, Best Contemporary Song, Best Engineered Record, and Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists. The album also won Album of the Year.  Just about everybody and their brother has tried to jump on this bandwagon with a recording of their own, including Elvis Presley, Mary Blige & Andrea Bocelli, and Aretha Franklin.

In June 2017, a charity version was recorded by Artists For Grenville, a group comprising 50 well-known British vocalists and musicians. They were collected together by Simon Cowell to record a charity single to raise money for the families of the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017. The song immediately climbed to #1 on the UK singles chart.

Bridge over Troubled Water
Simon & Garfunkel

When you’re weary, feeling small
When tears are in your eyes, I’ll dry them all (all)
I’m on your side, oh, when times get rough
And friends just can’t be found
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

When you’re down and out
When you’re on the street
When evening falls so hard
I will comfort you (ooo)
I’ll take your part, oh, when darkness comes
And pain is all around
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

Sail on silver girl
Sail on by
Your time has come to shine
All your dreams are on their way
See how they shine
Oh, if you need a friend
I’m sailing right behind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind

Songwriters: Paul Simon
Bridge over Troubled Water lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

41 thoughts on “♫ Bridge Over Troubled Water ♫ (Redux)

  1. Pingback: ♫ Let It Be ♫ (Redux) | Filosofa's Word

  2. Thanks, Jill! This is definitely one of the best songs of the past, and so useful for calming down. Here – in the sometimes very “brain-free” village – we now have investigated another possible case of money shoveling from the public to the private site. Workers from a public construction site were used to beautify a more private used place.
    xx Michael

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m so glad you liked it!!! Money shoveling! That is an apt expression, one I’ve not heard before! In your small village, I wouldn’t think there would be such types of ‘white-collar crime’. Keep me posted about how it turns out, okay? xx

      Like

  3. Hello Jill. Thank you. In my childhood there were some pretty bad times that songs such as this one helped me to survive and heal from. Another was one Rawgod mentioned, “Let It Be.” Another was “Lean On Me”. There seems to be a power to these songs and the way they are sung, the music that helps carry their message. Perhaps in these very troubled times we need to hear these songs and their meanings again. Best wishes. Hugs

    Liked by 3 people

  4. A beautiful song, with real power. For me, the original recorded version knocks spots off all of the others. Interesting snippet about Cowell, probably the only good thing he has ever done in his life. Please don’t put him in a ‘good people’ post, though: the man is a complete arsehole!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Further to your discussion of covers the other day, Aretha Franklin covered “Bridge” and won #1 R&B vocal performance of the year. Gail and I listened to it first, and then to the live version you provided. After that we both needed to hear the original studio version, the first two listens left us feeling unsatisfied. I never noticed it before, but the piano in the studio version adds so much to the song. The original was the best. The live version was okay. And for us, Aretha blew it. I generally love Aretha, but she wimped out on this one. I cannot talk about other covers, apparently there were too many to mention, including, as you said, Elvis. Nope, here the original reigns supreme. But now, I need to listen to that other recording that came out at almost the same time. You know the one I mean. That little song by the Beatles, the one they called “Let It Be.”

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Jill, great song. While Garfunkel takes it new heights, we should not forget that Simon wrote it. Per his biography, Simon often felt shortchanged having to leave the stage while Garfunkel sang his song. In fact, when they were celebrated later, Simon sang the first verse with Garfunkel the rest. Keith

    Liked by 4 people

    • I hadn’t heard that Simon felt shortchanged … that’s sad, for as you said, he was the one who wrote the song. Glad you enjoyed it, though … stay tuned tomorrow afternoon for another ‘oldie but goodie’, this one by the Beatles.

      Like

      • Jill, Simon is a very talented person in his own right, but I think he felt at times he did not get the credit due. He wrote many of the S&G songs while traveling around England on his own performing after the first release of “Sounds of Silence” did not do well. When he came back, the song was redone and re-released to much acclaim. Keith

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s