Old Friends
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 A superficial gloss on the lives and careers of the famed rock duo, from prolific celebrity-chronicler Morella (Paul and Joan, 1988, etc.) and TV producer Barey. Apparently devoid of any fresh research--or insight--the book follows the pair from their childhood friendship through a brief run as teen rockers, stunning success as leading players in the 60's folk-rock movement (becoming, as the authors ponderously and repeatedly note, ``the voice of a generation''), the bitter 1970 breakup, several abortive reunion attempts, and their current status as independent ``old friends, professionally but not personally, estranged.'' Included are the expected misunderstandings and jealousies, along with the duo's respective personal involvements, marriages (two each), and divorces (two for Simon, one for Garfunkel). The singers emerge precisely as they have appeared in their various group and individual incarnations: Art--decent, cerebral, clever, and almost ruinously passive; Paul- -driven, moody, insecure, talented, and a lot more interesting. The blandly familiar overview is, however, marred by minor but annoying factual inaccuracies (e.g., misidentifying the trailblazing British rock show Ready, Steady, Go as Ready, Set, Go) and such inexplicable errors as misquoting the lyrics of the duo's chart- topping ``Mrs. Robinson'' not once, but twice--a lapse compounded by the obvious readings passed off here as song analysis (the solemn pronouncement that the line ``My daddy was the family bassman'' in the song ``Baby Driver'' is ``homage'' to Paul's bassist father, etc.), and by the questionable slighting of Simon's far more critically acclaimed solo career. Basic fanzine fluff. (Sixteen pages of photographs--not seen.)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1991
ISBN: 1-55972-089-1
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: Birch Lane Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 1991