1967 Simon & Garfunkel – Fakin’ It
The album Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme came out in October 1966 and was the third album from the duo Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel. While they recorded the song A Hazy Shade of Winter during the sessions for that album, they decided to exclude it from the track list. Instead, they issued the song as a single a month after the album came out and slated it for their fourth album.
The song did not do well as well as their earlier singles, peaking at #13 on the Hot 100 late that year.
The duo recorded At the Zoo for the soundtrack of the film The Graduate, but when the producer declined to use that song, they released it as a single in early 1967 that peaked at #16 on the Hot 100.
Paul and Art helped plan the June 1967 Monterey Pop Festival and performed at the show. Once that work was behind them, they recorded their next single.
Fakin’ It was unusual for a single: it sounded more like a mini-story that even included a spoken word section where singer Beverley Martyn said, “Good morning, Mr. Leitch. Have you had a busy day?” Beverley was friends with Donovan Leitch, which may account for the name. Paul tried to imagine himself working for a living without being a performer and chose tailor as an occupation. He mentioned that in song’s lyrics as well and later found out that his grandfather had, in fact, been a tailor.
It was still commonplace at the time to issue singles only with mono mixes. AM radio stations preferred songs that were less than three minutes. In an effort to head off problems with getting airplay for a longer record, Columbia Records issued the single with a label that read 2:74 for a length instead of 3 minutes and 14 seconds.
The trick did not appear to work too well – the single stalled at #23 on the Hot 100 in the Summer of 1967. Fortunately, The Graduate used Mrs. Robinson on its soundtrack, and that single topped the charts in 1968.
The pair’s next album finally came out in 1968. Bookends included a completely new side one and collected the singles that had not yet appeared on an album on side two. The album featured a new stereo mix for Fakin’ It that Paul was reportedly pleased with because the stereo separation helped bring out the sound of the instruments and vocals.
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