Why is Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water on my best 1,000 albums ever list?
You’re breaking my heart. You’re shaking my confidence daily.
Some stats & info about Simon & Garfunkel – Bridge Over Troubled Water
- What kind of musical stylings does this album represent? Folk Rock, Singer Songwriter, Folk Music
- Rolling Stone’s greatest 500 albums ranking – #172
- All Music’s rating – 5 out of 5 stars
- When was Bridge Over Troubled Water released? 1970
- My ranking, the one you’re reading right now – #676 out of 1,000
Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water on Spotify
What does the “best 1,000 albums ever” mean and why are you doing this?
Yeah, I know it’s audacious, a little crazy (okay, maybe a lot cray cray), bordering on criminal nerdery.
But here’s what it’s NOT: a definitive list of the Greatest Albums of All-Time. This is 100% my own personal super biased, incredibly subjective review of what my top 1,000 albums are, ranked in painstaking order over the course of doing research for nearly a year, Rob from High Fidelity style. Find out more about why I embarked on a best 1,000 albums ever project.
What does Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water mean to me? What does it make me feel? Why is it exciting or compelling?
For most of my adult life, if I had to consider how I felt about Simon & Garfunkel as a musical act (duo? Project? Musical consortium?) I’d probably land somewhere in the territory of how I respect them more than really dig their music on the whole.
However, in digging into Bridge Over Troubled Water, the respect remained but I found myself enjoying the material a lot more than I expected, if perhaps in different ways than your typical Simon & Garfunkel fans.
I’ll start with “Cecilia,” though, which is arguably one of the… fellows’ best known songs. It shows off finely tuned musical craftsmanship, of course, but I love how fun and even whimsical the song feels. Fresh, too, over half a century later.
“Cecilia” helped to lead me in the direction to get into Bridge Over Troubled Waters’ deep(er) cuts that are similarly upbeat, light, and fun in sound. “Keep the Customer Satisfied” maintains that light, singalong folk rock vibe with a nice, subtle keyboard (and even some horns!) backing up the acoustic guitar and other instrumentation.
“Baby Driver” might feel the “lightest” of all these songs, breezy at that, like taking a driving out of town with nothing at all to do except enjoy the open road*.
* There’s no traffic in this analogy, okay?
I have to imagine that Edgar Wright took inspiration from that song to whip up a little film of his own called Baby Driver.
It’s unusual for me to discuss an album on this here best 1,000 albums ever project and neglect to mention two of its absolutely monster hits. As for the title track and “The Boxer,” I’ll rely on what I said above and state that I admire then really dig those songs. Overall, though, the Bridge is quite intact and solid, indeed.
Pop culture stuff that has something to do with Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water
I thought about Simon & Garfunkel quite a bit while watching a short lived and often brilliant show on Amazon Prime called Patriot (well, the first season was truly brilliant, the second and final one not so much).
It’s a complex show to explain concisely with a frequency all its own. But the connection to Simon & Garfunkel is clear in that the main character, a reluctant and often melancholy CIA operative played by Michael Dorman, enjoys expressing himself by way of performing folk music of a singer songwriter-style. The hilarious bit is that the narrative lyrics to his songs convey the truth of his violent and in theory top secret work that he’s up to when he’s not being mopey and reluctant.