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Bridge Over Troubled Waters Simon & Garfunkel (Columbia, 1970)

Bridge Over Troubled Waters was the fifth and final for American folk rock duo Simon & Garfunkel. Bridge Over Troubled Waters was the follow up to their soundtrack for The Graduate and Garfunkel’s acting role in Catch-22. Having been together for over a decade, the guys decided to part ways in 1970. Garfunkel went on to continued his film career while Simon remained in music. Over the years, they both released many solo albums. However, before they broke up, they released one last gem to the world, the album (and subsequent) single, Bridge Over Troubled Waters.

Four singles were released: The Boxer, Bridge Over Troubled Waters, Cecilia and El Condor Pasa (If I Could). The Boxer went top five in Austria, Canada, the Netherlands, South Africa and Sweden. It went top ten additionally in Australia, Ireland, Norway, Spain, UK and the U.S. It was Simon & Garfunkel’s follow-up single after Mrs. Robinson (hard to top). Bridge Over Troubled Waters was the final single the boys recorded for the album. It won them five Grammys in 1971, including Record of the Year and Song of the Year. It also happened to become their biggest hit, topping the American chart for six weeks (and topped the UK, Canadian, French and New Zealand charts too). It sold over 6 million copies worldwide. Cecilia refers to the patron saint of music, St. Cecilia. Cecilia topped Billboard’s Cash Box chart and went top five in Belgium, Canada, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the American Hot 100. El Condor Pasa (If I Could) was a cover of the orchestral piece from the zarzuela El Condor Pasa. Simon & Garfunkel used the Spanish version as the base track and added some lyrics. El Condor Pasa (If I Could) topped the Australian, Austrian, Belgian, Dutch, West German, Spanish and Swiss charts. It hit #18 in the U.S.

The album Bridge Over Troubled Waters topped the charts in 10 countries (Australia, Canada, Dutch, France, Japan, Norway, Spain, Sweden, the UK, the U.S. and West Germany), won two Grammy Awards and sold over 25 million copies. (If you’re going out, why not go out on top, right?) A great end to a wonderful career together. In 2011, a 40th anniversary re-issue was released.

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