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Bookends

Simon & GarfunkelAudio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (133 customer reviews)

Price: $3.69 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B0000024TQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (133 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #263,272 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Bookends Theme
2. Save The Life Of My Child
3. America
4. Overs
5. Voices Of Old People
6. Old Friends
7. Bookends Theme
8. Fakin' It
9. Punky's Dilemma
10. Mrs. Robinson
11. A Hazy Shade Of Winter
12. At The Zoo

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Track for track, this is Simon & Garfunkel's best album. By 1968, Simon had shed his more precious tendencies as a songsmith. Meanwhile, the duo and coproducer/engineer Roy Halee had become adept studio technicians. "America" and "Mrs. Robinson" displayed the kind of sonic breadth that would flower even more fully two years later with "The Boxer" and "Bridge Over Troubled Water." Bits of whimsy ("Punky's Dilemma," "At the Zoo") and melancholy ("Old Friends," "A Hazy Shade of Winter") complete this autumnal album. --Steve Stolder

Product Description

Simon & Garfunkel ~ Bookends

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
55 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tugs at your heartstrings September 4, 2001
Format:Audio CD
I've always thought Simon and Garfunkel were one of the most beautifully arranged groups ever to record. Their voices are angelic. Their songs are often so emotional that I can barely stand to listen to them.
This album, Bookends, stands at the top of my list of favorite S&G recordings.
As the liner notes indicate, this is their fourth, "and arguably best, album"..."a meditation on the passage of life and the psychological impact of life's irreversible, ever-accumulating losses." That's probably what sets it apart from their other recordings to me. It's ambitious, and chock-full of import and meaning. If a progressive rock band would have attempted a concept like this in the 1970s, they would have been labeled "pretentious" or "bombastic." Yet, S&G got away with it.
Granted, there are tracks I don't like as well as others ("Save The Life Of My Child" for one), but tracks such as "America," "Voices of Old People," "Old Friends," "Bookends Theme" and "Mrs. Robinson" more than make up for the odd track or two that doesn't strike a chord within me. "Bookends Theme," alone, tugs at my heartstrings like very few songs do. And if any song seems to resonate with the spirit of the Sixties it's "Mrs. Robinson."
There really isn't anything else I can say about this album that you probably don't already know, or haven't already read in previous reviews.
Except for this: The remastering is outstanding. The voices ring out clearly, the acoustic guitars are crisp and bright and there are things going on in each track that you might not have noticed in previous editions of this album.
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52 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Preserve your memories-- they're all that's left you..." December 21, 2011
Format:Audio CD
BOOKENDS (released in 1968) is the greatest of all Simon & Garfunkel albums, and one of the best records made in the 1960s.

When this review was first published on the night of 12/25/06, I'd been pondering Christmas of 1968. I was 14 back then. It was an awful year to live through for anyone, especially a kid. The Vietnam War, the assassination of public figures, and seeing part of my city burn the previous summer during riots; it was a lot to handle.

The song "Save The Life Of My Child" from BOOKENDS was in my head during most of 1968. I identified with that frightened boy standing on the ledge, while a crowd below urged him to jump. His final thought as "he flew away" was "...I got no hiding place." That was exactly how I felt in those dark days.

What a powerful and unforgettable way to begin an album. The moods of BOOKENDS reflect so well the troubled times of the late '60s, with its anti-war sentiments (Punky's Dilemma), and its tales of love and love lost (America, Overs). The original first side of the record ends with the sad longing and fears of Old Friends, who sit on a park bench and reminisce together. But this bittersweet song has a deeper message. These old men were survivors-- if they were supposed to be elderly in 1968, then they made it through the Depression, and two world wars, and if they were the youth of 1968 projected into the future, well they too made it through trials by fire.

And so have I made it through! I'm in my late 50s now and headed for that park bench one day. The fears and sadness of 1968 are long past, but a final memory remains:

As I lay in bed early that Christmas Eve, the colored glow of tree lights seeped into my room.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic August 14, 2006
Format:Audio CD
My wife just bought me a new record player...yeah, you read that right. I don't need some crazy ipod that holds 3,000 of my favorite songs...just give me something simple...something uncomplicated...something that puts me in touch with my soul and I'm quite the happy guy.

This album is free from all pretenses. It's sad and yet it's beautiful. It's alive and yet it feels like death is its closest companion. I'm not being maudlin, here, that's the way it is. We go through so many mini-deaths during one lifetime. We make friends. We lose friends. We're riding high one moment and the next we're flat on our backs. But it's all part of the whole. Black and white with a million shades of gray in-between.

I put on this album that I've had since the fourth grade. The record cracks and creaks, it moans and groans...it's a lot like me...but just like this record, I'm always ready to start from the beginning and be me. Who else could I possibly be?

I'm tempted to buy a brand new version of this classic on CD, but I wait until the feelings pass and cling to something I've owned for the last thirty years. I don't have much left from those days gone by. But again, that's life.

This is probably the best album that Simon & Garfunkle put out. It caught them at a time when they, too, were going through changes and transistions, endings and new beginnings.

Life's a trip...pack accordingly.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars S&G's Magumn Opus June 9, 2003
Format:Audio CD
You know an album is good when one of the worst songs on it is the band's biggest single.
"Bookends" is Simon & Garfunkel, and 60's folk-rock, at their absolute best. While other bands were exploring complicted concepts and rock operas, S&G created a side-long song cycle about the simplest of ideas; growing up and growing old.
The album opens with a soft acoustic guitar line of the "Bookends Theme" which explodes into the psychedelic blast of "Save the Life of My Child", then fades into the glorious land and soul-searching ode "America". "Overs" deals with the subject of relationships reaching a stalemate, and "Old Friends" takes an elequent look at old age with beautiful vocals and melodies and stirring strings, and fades back into the original opening guitar line with ending coda "preserve your memories, they're all that's left you." Brilliant. And that's just the first half.
The second half, merely a collection of songs, is one of their stongest collections. The moderate hit "Fakin' It", the wry "Punky's Delemma", the rocking "A Hazy Shade of Winter" and the poppy Orwellian-with-a-twist "At the Zoo". The monster hit of "Mrs. Robinson" although brilliant in its own right, sounds almost out of place here, and ranks up as one of the weaker tracks.
The album covers a great deal of ground, musically and emotionally, and transports the listener...and does so in about a half an hour. Simon & Garfunkel do in 30 minutes what most bands can't do with a full-length cd.
At long last, this gem of an album is getting the credit it so deserves. This is (arguably) Simon & Garfunkel's greatest work as a duo, and perhaps one of the greatest albums of all time. Absoulutely essential.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars some outstanding work, but taking a level down
after parsley sage, I have to give this 4 *s. there just had to be a bit of a let down & there is. there is nothing on this lp that shines like the
album of '66. Read more
Published 2 days ago by lofus
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfectly Wonderful Nostalgia
I owned the album and loved it. Now I own the CD and I love it as much as I did over 30 years ago.
Published 4 days ago by Mary L. Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars Simon and Garfunkel's Fourth Album Displays Their Talent
Bookends, that word captures the essence of Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel. They are bookends.

Bookends may well be one of Simon and Garfunkel's best albums ever. Read more
Published 9 days ago by Happy Camper
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect!
Great mp3. It replaced my original Album. Yep!
Published 1 month ago by JT
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great.
Published 2 months ago by Louise Cafasso
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A must for any collection
Published 2 months ago by D. A. Nicholson III
5.0 out of 5 stars Brought me back to San Fransico
Brought me back to my hippie days and reminded me that great songs cross the ages. Many of these were part of the fabric of who I am now.
Published 5 months ago by Haven
5.0 out of 5 stars Brings Back Memories
High School Reunion coming up shortly and was going through the old songs and this came up...brought back some great memories.
Published 5 months ago by Hot_Rod
5.0 out of 5 stars Listen to this album
I've heard all these songs 100s of times, mostly on crappy radios or stereos when the album first came out. But hearing these tunes on a modern stereo was a revelation. Read more
Published 6 months ago by d789
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent listening...
Enjoyed this album when it first came out. Now I can take it in the car with me and enjoy it again!
Published 6 months ago by Stefanie X. Falzone
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