Friday, 27 April 2018

Simon & Garfunkel - Think Too Much (1983)

In late 1982 Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel were completing the last leg of a very successful reunion tour, and there was talk of recording a new album together. Their on again/off again partnership was going through an 'on' stage, and fans were clamouring for a new record to follow the tour. It was never going to be an easy ride, as Simon had already written all the songs as a follow-up to his 'One Trick Pony' album, and as they weren't written with Garfunkel in mind, then he would have to write his own vocal parts to slot into the tracks. This took longer than expected, and Simon had already finished recording all his vocals before Garfunkel had even written his parts. Eventually recording began and continued throughout 1983, with Garfunkel adding his vocals to the mostly already completed songs. Things then took a strange turn, when in August 1983 Simon called Garfunkel to tell him that the album wasn't turning out as he'd wanted and that he was going to issue it as a solo album called 'Hearts And Bones'. He then set about meticulously erasing every note of Garfunkel's voice from the tapes, and 'Hearts And Bones' duly appeared in 1983, featuring all of the songs that they'd both worked on, but with only Simon's voice audible. The relationship was now 'off' again. All that remains of Garfunkel's vocals are some hard to find rough mixes, but it does hint at what the album could have sounded like, as nearly all the songs are radically different from the 'Hearts And Bones' versions, and although Garfunkel can't be heard on all of them, where he is evident then the old magic is still there.



Track listing

01 Cars Are Cars (with Art Garfunkel)
02 Train In The Distance (with Art Garfunkel)
03 Rene and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War (with additional coda)
04 Think Too Much (A)
05 The Late Great Johnny Ace
06 Song About The Moon (with Art Garfunkel)
07 Allergies (with Art Garfunkel)
08 Hearts And Bones (with additional introduction)
09 When Numbers Get Serious
10 Citizen Of The Planet (with Art Garfunkel)
11 Think Too Much (B)

Oddly enough, I don't hear much of Art on the two tracks which everyone agrees he is on - 'Train In The Distance' and 'Song About The Moon' - but his contributions to 'Cars Are Cars' and 'Allergies' are unmistakable..


12 comments:

  1. Nice. Can you mark with songs have Garfunkel on them? And on the ones without him, are those different versions than on the released album?

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  2. Many thanks for this! With regard to "Allergies"...the opening section is actually from Garfunkel's 1988 solo album, LEFTY and, therefore, was recorded much later than the aborted THINK TOO MUCH sessions. The second section sounds very much like the released version on HEARTS AND BONES.

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  3. Oops...neglected to say that the opening section is from "Slow Break Up" on LEFT. The song was written by Stephen Bishop who sings back-up on the full version of the recording.

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    1. Having now listened to it I see what you mean, so I wonder who on earth tagged that on to the beginning of 'Allergies', and I'm now wondering if the same thing happened with 'Cars Are Cars'.

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  4. Wow, that uh..... that "Cars Are Cars" is just ghastly. Sounds like someone tried to plop in Art's vocals from the live performance and didn't bother synching them or anything. O_O

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  5. Also, that "Song About The Moon" sounds much too clear to be the Art/Paul version. The bootleg version has Art singing lead in certain parts, but is fairly rough quality.

    The "Think Too Much" album actually does exist in bootleg form - but the quality is bad, and Art only appears to be present on a couple songs.

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    1. This is the only bootleg of 'Think Too Much' that I could find online, but it turns out that it's not the original tapes at all, but a combination of the two tracks that Art appears on, some alternative versions of Paul's songs, and those two weird mash-ups of later Art songs welded onto the 'Think Too Much' tracks. It's an interesting listen, but it's probably the best that we're ever going to get to hear.

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  6. Well, no - the actual "Think Too Much" album has been bootlegged, although it sounds like a tape worn down through multiple generations (with the hiss being louder than the music at times). Art is only audible on two or three songs, so it clearly isn't the finished product, but it is out there.

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  7. Hey can u tell us Like Side 1 Or Side 2 is

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  8. Not sure what you mean. This was a CD bootleg, so there are sides 1 and 2.

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  9. It used to be here http://jacobjwalker.effectiveeducation.org/blog/2016/07/09/secret-lost-album-of-simon-and-garfunkel/ but it seems to have been deleted, so not sure if you'll find it again.

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