Best known for being one half of the folk duo Simon & Garfunkel the Grammy-award winning American singer, poet, and Golden Globe-nominated actor Arthur Ira “Art” Garfunkel was born November 5, 1941.Highlights of his solo music Career include a top 10 hit, three top 20 hits, six top 40 hits, 14 Adult Contemporary top 30 sngles, five Adult Contemporary number ones, two UK number ones and a People’ Choice Award. Through his solo and collaborative work, Garfunkel has earned six Grammys, including the Lifetime Achievement Award. In 1990, he and former musical partner Paul Simon were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Garfunkel was born in Forest Hills, Queens, New York City & has two brothers; Jules and Jerome. His cousin on his mother’s side is Lou Pearlman founder of ‘N Sync and the Backstreet Boys. Asa child Garfunkel’s father bought him a wire recorder and from then on, Garfunkel spent his afternoons singing, recording and playing it back, so he could listen for flaws and learn how to improve.At his bar mitzvah in 1954, Garfunkel sang as a cantor performing over four hours of his repertoire to his family. He met his future singing partner Paul Simon in the sixth grade at PS 174, when they were both cast in the elementary school graduation play, Alice In Wonderland .Between 1956 and 1962, the two performed together as “Tom & Jerry”. They were Inspired by The Everly Brothers, close two-part vocal harmony. In 1957, Simon and Garfunkel recorded “Hey, Schoolgirl” under the name Tom & Jerry, which reached number forty-nine on the pop charts. He also released some singles as a solo folk-styled crooner under the name Artie Garr entitled “Beat Love” and “Dream Alone”.After graduating from Forest Hills High School alongside Simon, Garfunkel studied at Columbia College, Columbia University inManhattan in the early 1960s. Garfunkel also competed at tennis, skiing, fencing, and bowling at the college & was a member of the all-male a cappella group the Columbia Kingsmen. , Garfunkel earned a B.A. in art history ,followed by a M.A. in mathematics from Columbia in 1967 & studied for a doctorate in mathematics education at Teachers College, Columbia University during the peak of Simon and Garfunkel’s commercial success.
In 1963, he and Simon (who graduated from Queens College before dropping out ofBrooklyn Law School) reformed their duo as “Simon and Garfunkel”. They released their first album, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M. In 1964 & although this Was an initial failure The next year, producer Tom Wilson lifted the song “The Sound of Silence” from the record, dubbed an electric backing onto it, and released it as a single Which toppped the Billboard pop charts’Simon went to England ‘ to pursue a solo career but reunited with Garfunkel After “The Sounds of Silence” became a commercial success and they recorded four more influential albums, Sounds of Silence; Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme; Bookends; and the hugely successful Bridge over Troubled Water. Simon and Garfunkel also contributed extensively to the soundtrack of the 1967 Mike Nichols film The Graduate (starring Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft). Simon and Garfunkel returned to England in the Fall of 1968 and did a concert appearance at Kraft Hall which was broadcast on the BBC, and also featured Art’s solo performance of “For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her”, .While Garfunkel was not a songwriter per se, he did write the poem “Canticle” as a re-write of Simon’s “Side of A Hill” from his debut album, for “Scarborough Fair/Canticle”. He also worked as the vocal arranger for the duo, . He is also credited as having written the arrangement on “The Boxer”, and creating the Audio montage, “Voices Of The Old People” on “Bookends”In 1970 Simon & Garfunkel split following the release of their most critically acclaimed album, Bridge over Troubled Water . Citing personal differences and divergence in career interests. Both pursued solo projects after 1970.
During a three-year hiatus after Simon & Garfunkel’s break-up, Garfunkel starred in two Mike Nichols films, Catch-22 (1970) andCarnal Knowledge (1971). He also worked as a mathematics teacher at the Litchfield Private School in Connecticut. After Simon & Garfunkel released their Greatest Hits album and briefly reunited to perform a benefit concert for presidential candidate George McGovern, Garfunkel felt ready to return to his musical career. His first album was 1973’s Angel Clare, which contained “All I Know” along with “I Shall Sing” and “Travelling Boy” as singles. The album was received with mixed reviews, reaching no.5 in the U.S. In 1974, Garfunkel released the hit record, “Second Avenue”.
On his next album, 1975’s Breakaway, Garfunkel briefly reunited with Paul Simon for the 1975 hit “My Little Town”. The album also included the singles “Breakaway” (B-Side: “Disney Girls”) and “I Only Have Eyes For You” (a 1934 song written by Harry Warren)which is noted as being Garfunkel’s first UK Number One. Occasionally they would reunite, as in 1975 for their Top Ten single “My Little Town”, which Simon originally wrote for Garfunkel, claiming Garfunkel’s solo output was lacking “bite.” The song was included on their respective solo albums; Paul Simon’s Still Crazy After All These Years, and Garfunkel’s Breakaway.ln 1976, Garfunkel recorded both background and duet vocals for several artists, including Stephen Bishop’s Careless album, James Taylor’s In The Pocket album and J.D. Souther’s Black Rose album.
Garfunkel’s next release was the 1978 album, Watermark featuring thesingle, “Crying In My Sleep” (“Mr. Shuck ‘N’ Jive”& Garfunkel’s cover of Sam Cooke’s “(What a) Wonderful World” (B-Side: “Wooden Planes”) . In 1978 Garfunkel toured the U.S. and Canada & also made an appearance on Saturday Night Live as Well as releasIng the album, Fate For Breakfast Containing the singles, “In A Little While (I’ll Be On My Way! “Since I Don’t Have You” And “Bright Eyes” (B-Side: “Sail on a Rainbow”( written by Mike Batt). A version of “Bright Eyes” also appeared in the movie Watership Down. Garfunkel’s next album , Scissors Cut contained three singles, “A Heart in New York” (B-Side: “Is This Love” “Scissors Cut” and “Hang On In”, Garfunkel reunited with Simon for The Concert in Central Park and a world tour. They had disagreements during the tour & the aborted reunion album Think Too Much, was eventually released as Hearts and Bones.. In 1986, Garfunkel played the part of the butcher on the Mike Batt concept album The Hunting Of The Snark. Garfunkel’s 1988 album, Lefty yeilded three singles, “So Much in Love”, “When A Man Loves A Woman,” and “This Is The Moment.” In 1984 Garfunkel released his first compilation album, The Art Garfunkel Album which contained the song “Sometimes When I’m Dreaming this was followed by 1988’s Garfunkel and 1993 Up ’til Now.
His live 1996 concert Across America features musical guests James Taylor, Garfunkel’s wife, Kim, and his son James. Garfunkel performed the theme song for the 1991 television series, Brooklyn Bridge, and “The Ballad of Buster Baxter” for a 1998 episode of the children’s educational television series Arthur Garfunkel’s performance of “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” was used in the end credits of the 1997 film As Good as It Gets.In 2003, Simon and Garfunkel reunited again for a successful world tour that extended into 2004. , his song “Sometimes When I’m Dreaming” was re-recorded by ex-ABBA singer Agnetha Fältskog on her album My Colouring Book.In 2006, Garfunkel releaSed the album Some Enchanted Evening ‘which was a dedicated celebration of pop standards of Garfunkel’s childhood.
ln 2009, Garfunkel appeared as himself on the HBO television show Flight of the Conchords episode entitled “Prime Minister.” He continued to tour in 2009 with four musicians and his son. they also participated together in the 25th anniversary of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame concerts at New York’s Madison Square Garden alongside Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band; U2; Metallica; Aretha Franklin; Stevie Wonder, and Crosby, Stills & Nash. In November 2010, Garfunkel said that, having quit smoking two and a half months before, he was recovering from paresis, and would be touring in 2011. in August 2012, he released a 34-song retrospective, “The Singer.” Together, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.In 2003, the two reunited again when they received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. This reunion led to a US tour—the acclaimed “Old Friends” concert series—followed by a 2004 international encore, which culminated in a free concert at the Colosseum in Rome