Wednesday, January 04, 2017

January 1966: Simon and Garfunkel's "The sounds of silence" was # 1 this week


Simon and Garfunkel recorded "The sounds of silence" two years before it became a hit.   It was a commercial failure the first time around.    

It went to # 1 when the original recording was remixed with electric guitars and drums.   This is the story:
The first recording was an acoustic version on Simon & Garfunkel's first album, Wednesday Morning, 3 AM, which was billed as "exciting new sounds in the folk tradition," and sold about 2000 copies. 
When the album tanked, Simon and Garfunkel split up. What they didn't know was that their record company had a plan. Trying to take advantage of the folk-rock movement, Columbia Records had producer Tom Wilson add electric instruments to the acoustic track. Simon and Garfunkel had no idea their acoustic song had been overdubbed with electric instruments, but it became a huge hit and got them back together. 
If Wilson had not reworked the song without their knowledge, Simon and Garfunkel probably would have gone their separate ways. 
When the song hit #1 in the States, Simon was in England and Garfunkel was at college.
The acoustic version is HERE and the radio version is HERE.    


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