Arthur Garfunkel was 11 years old when he met Paul Simon for the first time in 1953. The duo's mutual love of music unwittingly led them on a long and successful musical career path that far exceeded their modest expectations as 11-year-olds.
Doo-wop music was the spark that brought these two together. Garfunkel began to concentrate on vocal duties while Simon honed his guitar skills over time.
Growing up in a New York City suburb provided the duo with both opportunities to perform and easy access to recording studios.
They pooled their money when they were 15 years old in 1957 to pay the $25 recording fee for "Hey, Schoolgirl," a song based loosely on an Everly Brothers song, at the Sanders Recording Studio in New York City.
Big Records exec/songwriter Sidney Prosen, who is very interested in the upcoming duo, happened to see them by chance. According to Prosen, the names Garfunkel and Simon lacked the pizazz needed to pique the public's interest. So the names Tom Graph (Garfunkel) and Jerry Landis (Simon) were chosen, and here we are today, delving into the hows and whys.
In 1958, "Dancin' Wild" and "Hey Schoolgirl" were re-recorded and released in stores and on the radio, and they did well on various music charts. To cap off their unexpected success, the duo made an appearance on the hugely popular television show "American Bandstand."
With limited success, the duo attempted to capitalize further under the Tom & Jerry name before abandoning their musical careers to attend college. Because of the success of "Hey Schoolgirl," the pair remained active in the music industry while attending college.
As history has long demonstrated, Simon and Garfunkel have made many memorable contributions to traditional music and have long been a part of the classic music of yesteryear.
Simon & Garfunkel, according to Pitchfork, were a high-profile folk group distinguished by their intuitive harmony and Paul Simon's articulate songwriting, but more conservative than Greenwich Village's folk revivalists.
They had become the unthreatening, approachable folk establishment in the late 1960s, which forty years later made them an ideal gateway act to the weirder, harsher, more complex folkies of the 60s. Later albums, on the other hand, incorporated more ambitious production techniques and elements of gospel, rock, R&B, and classical music.
In 2003, Bridge Over Troubled Water was ranked 51 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme was ranked 201st, Bookends was ranked 233rd, and Greatest Hit was ranked 293rd. In 2004, "Bridge Over Troubled Water" ranked 47 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, "The Boxer" ranked 105, and "The Sound of Silence" ranked 156.