Simon & Garfunkel scored their first number one hit 50 years ago
The folk duo had already broken up when "The Sounds of Silence" finally topped the charts under a different name.
Earlier today, "Simon & Garfunkel" was a trending topic on Twitter. What brought a 1960s folk duo a viral sensation on social media? Having a song played in a political ad.
Coincindentally, it was fifty years ago that Simon & Garfunkel topped the Billboard 100 for the first time, on the chart appearing in the January 22, 1966, issue. "The Sound of Silence" brought the twosome to new levels of fame. The beautiful pop song had a funny course to the number one.
For starters, it was originally released in 1964 on the group's debut album, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M. The record flopped and Simon & Garfunkel split up. In 1965, the track began to get some radio play. This led the produce to remix the cut and overdub some new instrumentation. Meanwhile, Paul Simon was living in England. Art Garfunkel was living with his parents.
Oh, and the song was originally called "The Sounds of Silence." Somewhere along the way, the plural got lost.
The snowballing success took the song to to the peak after the new year. Simon returned to the U.S., regrouped with Garfunkel, and recorded a new album.
"The Sound of Silence" became one of the most performed songs of the 20th century.