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Simon & Garfunkel, Simon & Garfunkel: The Biography

Simon & Garfunkel: The Biography

“Here’s a crazy thing,” Paul Simon is quoted as once saying in this half-authorized bio (only Art Garfunkel cooperated). “Simon and Garfunkel are actually two people.” It’s a fact ignored by Kingston, whose puzzlingly constructed co-profile gives equal weight to these vastly disparate talents (Garfunkel himself assesses their relative contributions as “ninety-eight per cent to two, in favour of Paul”). As a result, Kingston allocates similar space to Simon’s landmark ’70s albums and Garfunkel’s less-than-essential work of the same period, and she barely mentions Simon’s masterpiece “Graceland,” which came out after the duo’s ’81 reunion and thus — unfortunately — is considered beyond the scope of the book. Kingston clearly loves the music, but with much of her analysis limited to banalities like ” suicide is] a profoundly destructive act” (well…yes) and with a slew of glaring errors (she mangles the spellings of Maggie and Terre Roche, ex-Zombie Colin Blunstone, Andrés Segovia, and Toots Thielemans), this biography doesn’t do justice to either of the complex minds it tries to probe.

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