Garfunkel still thinks Simon is a ‘jerk’
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Garfunkel still thinks Simon is a ‘jerk’

One half of the famous folk-rock duo shows he hasn't quite come to terms with their breakup over 40 years ago

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Art Garfunkel, 2013 (Adam Schartoff/CC BY-2.0)
Art Garfunkel, 2013 (Adam Schartoff/CC BY-2.0)

The musician Art Garfunkel recently showed that he still harbors frustration with former partner Paul Simon over their split more than four decades ago, just when they were at the top of the music scene.

In an interview with The Telegraph published Sunday, Garfunkel talked of the “monster” he created in Simon, his childhood friend.

When asked about how he felt on reuniting for some concerts with Simon, Garfunkel slipped into a bitter rhetorical outburst over their separation in 1971 just as they were enjoying the success of their fifth and most successful album, “Bridge over Troubled Water.”

“How can you walk away from this lucky place on top of the world, Paul? Garfunkel asked. “What’s going on with you, you idiot? How could you let that go, jerk?”

Garfunkel also revealed that he was not interested in ending their partnership at the time, rather in just taking a break.

“It was very strange. Nothing I would have done. I want to open up about this. I don’t want to say any anti-Paul Simon things, but it seems very perverse to not enjoy the glory and walk away from it instead. Crazy. What I would have done is take a rest from Paul, because he was getting on my nerves.”

Garfunkel is scheduled to play in Tel Aviv’s Bloomfield Stadium on June 10.

Despite embarking on separate solo careers, the two have performed together several times for reunion concerts over the years throughout the decades — from the ’70s to the ’90s; and in 2003, 2004, 2007 and 2009. They were also scheduled to perform together in 2010, but Garfunkel suffered a bout of paresis, which prevented him from using his vocal chords and scuppered the plan.

In response to the suggestion that Simon may have a Napoleon complex due to being short, Garfunkel agreed.

“I think you’re on to something. I would say so, yes,” he said, and explained that, as schoolchildren, he gave Simon friendship to support him as he suffered over his diminutive stature.

“And that compensation gesture has created a monster,” he mused.

However, despite the apparent lingering bitterness, Garfunkel said he was still keen on a reunion performance.

“So, as far as this half is concerned, I would say, ‘Why not, while we’re still alive.’”

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