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Andy Newton & Blake Roberts

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January 13, 2014

Singing legend Art Garfunkel uses his considerable celebrity to make a reservation at a local Greek restaurant.

Oh, hello there. I’m actor and singing legend Art Garfunkel. No, that’s right, an actor, too. Well, through the course of my long and - some might say - richly eclectic career, I’ve savored the finer things in life. The trappings of fame, though trappings they may be, nonetheless have their perks at times. Strolling along the foggy streets of London at dawn, drifting lazily down the picturesque canals of Venice, even walking across the entire American continent—right, the whole thing, check my website—I’ve soaked up the vast wealth of life’s experiences with great vigor, drank from the cup of human endeavor, and satiated myself on the nourishment of its bountiful fruit.

Yeah, so if I could get a table for two at 7:30, that’d be just about perfect.

You know, back when Paul and I were recording “Sounds of Silence”, there was this little Greek place down the street from the studio we used to run down to on breaks. They had these amazing--yeah, Paul Simon. Right, “Graceland.” No, I wasn’t involved with that. Sure, I’m glad you liked it. No, I don’t talk to him much, but I’ll mention it if I remember. Well, sure, I guess he wrote a fair number of the songs. Right, no, he won’t be coming. No, it’ll be me and someone else.

So, do you guys have souvlaki, or what? Oh, good.

But Paul and I passed many hours in this restaurant, back in the Sixties. Vassily’s. We’d share a plate of spanokopita and discuss possible arrangements for songs. We’d huddle together, whiling away the evening, and talk about the aural—Yeah, I helped with the arrangements. Yes. Actually, I arranged a lot of the harmony parts for our tracks. Yeah, a fair amount. You know “Homeward Bound”? Yeah, well, the chorus. The harmonies on the chorus. Sure.

Oh, do you guys have that sauce? The yogurt dip sauce? Tza-something? Tzatziki. Sure. And that comes with the souvlaki, or is it extra? Fantastic.

Collaboration is a delicate and misunderstood art, much like the flaky phyllo crust of a good spanokopita, you see. At our peak, in Simon and Garfunkel, we were able to—no. Paul wrote the songs, yes, but we both had input as to how they were recorded. Are you familiar with the producer Roy Halee? No, with two “E”s. No, not the contractor. No. Well, he did engineer a lot of Simon and Garfunkel records, and he always treated our opinions equally. Right.

Did you get the pun, there? With “engineer”? Yeah, thanks.

One other thing, if I may—I’d like to request a booth. That’s right, a booth for two. No, I do anticipate that it will be two people. Right, in all likelihood. No, I prefer not to eat alone, as a general rule. Right, haha, Rock, Island.  No, yeah, that's good. I'm pretty sure she's coming, though. Well, she said she has rock climbing 'till 8, is the thing. Yeah, rock climbing. Right, I know that’s confusing, what with the whole “I am a Rock” thing. People do it for exercise. No, there are these places with little artificial mountains. Yeah, with the little plastic handles and whatnot. Right, a woman. No, it's not with Mr. Simon. Well, no, a lot of older people do it, too. She's very vital. You ever hear of slacklining? Well, no, she doesn't do that, really. But there are other people at the gym there. They do it.

Right, haha, Rock, Island.

Is it possible to get the Tzatziki on the side? Right, so I can drizzle it on myself. Tzatziki. Am I saying that right? With the accent on the penultimate syllable? That’s a fun word. Tzatziki.

No, a booth would be better. Well, I understand that Mr. Simon dined here last week, and he did have a booth. Well, no, I’m afraid I don’t see the difference. You know, I just think a booth would provide some much needed privacy, is all. From my fans. Fans, that’s right. No, I do get recognized. When you're pretty tall, you do sort of stand out, haha! I’m pretty recognizable. My face is out there. People recognize you from the album covers, you know. From “Breakaway,” for example. They’ll see it in the Tower Records. “Breakaway?” Number nine album in 1975, Breakaway. No, in the U.S., in the U.S. No, I believe it was sold in major retailers. Oh, I wasn’t aware Tower Records had gone out of business. That’s truly a shame. I had more than a few record signings there. Right, records. No, there was always a line. Actually, one time all the way back to the Contemporary Jazz section. Right, number nine in the U.S.

What’s that? Oh, well, I guess we could just sit at the bar.