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"My Little Town" is a 1975 song by the American duo Simon & Garfunkel. It was written by Paul Simon, who produced the track along with Art Garfunkel and Phil Ramone. Although the song wouldn't appear on any of the duo's albums until later, it was included on both the solo releases for Simon (Still Crazy After All These Years) and Garfunkel (Breakaway) in 1975.

History

After the success of their Bridge over Troubled Water album in 1970, both Simon and Garfunkel decided to part ways and record their own solo material.

In June of 1972, they were asked to sing at a political benefit concert for United Statesmarker presidential candidate George McGovern at Madison Square Gardenmarker, New York Citymarker.

On October 18, 1975, Simon hosted the second episode of the premiere season of the NBC comedy sketch program Saturday Night Live. During the musical numbers, Garfunkel performed with him, and together they sang three songs: "The Boxer"; "Scarborough Fair"; and their new collaboration, "My Little Town".

Simon has stated that the song is not autobiographical; instead he says that it is about "someone who hates the town he grew up in. Somebody happy to get out." He has been quoted describing the writing of the song: "It originally was a song I was writing for Artie. I was gonna write a song for his new album, and I told him it would be a nasty song, because he was singing too many sweet songs. It seemed like a good concept for him." After playing the song for Garfunkel, the two decided to collaborate again in the studio on this one track.

While Simon insists it is not autobiographical, Garfunkel has explained, in recent interviews, that it was about his own childhood, how he "grew up in an area where a career in music was not seen as either desirable nor exciting". This seems true since Garfunkel's parents did insist he gain some qualification aside from his pure tenor voice (He gained a bachelors degree in Arts History in 1965, and a Master's degree in Mathematics in 1967). Garfunkel, upon Simon & Garfunkel's break-up, worked as a teacher in Connecticut, a Draftsmen in New York and a Math Tutor In Los Angeles.

The song is performed very quietly, beginning with a piano solo (by Garfunkel), and almost non-existent drumwork. They both begin to sing together (there are no solo parts) which only further showcased their vocals. Although there is also some bass guitar as well (which Simon also played), towards the middle and end of the song several horns are heard and the drumwork gets louder in conjunction with their voices.

Charts

The buzz surrounding the surprise reunion of the two singers helped to generate anticipation for each of their solo albums, which were released within a few weeks of the performance on Saturday Night Live. Credited on both albums as being performed by 'Simon & Garfunkel', "My Little Town" became the duo's eighth top-ten hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in late 1975, peaking at number nine. It also spent two weeks atop the Billboard adult contemporary chart, becoming their second number one on this survey as a duo. Both singers have hit number one on the adult contemporary chart as solo performers as well, Garfunkel four times and Simon twice.

External links



References

  1. Simon & Garfunkel biography from rollingstone.com
  2. List of guest hosts on SNL from saturday-night-live.com
  3. Hyatt, Wesley (1999). The Billboard Book of Number One Adult Contemporary Hits (Billboard Publications)
  4. Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top Forty Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications)



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