Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Punky’s Dilemma; Simon & Garfunkel

I took this interview from Art Garfunkel's website. Of course, Paul Simon (in his solo career) has a much more famous whistling song — Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard — but this hidden gem deserves as much consideration as "Me and Julio". "Punky's Dilemma" is, in my opinion, the most romantic song ever done without meant to be one... It could be the "would you put my photo on your piano" part — it makes a beautiful image in my mind.... But I'm suspicious to say that, Simon and Garfunkel are more than perfect!

Welcome back to In the Studio. This week highlighting Simon & Garfunkel’s legendary Bookends album. I’m Redbeard. A few months before Bookends came out, Simon & Garfunkel’s music had been featured prominently in the Mike Nichols movie The Graduate. A big hit at the box office. The Graduate catapulted newcomer Dustin Hofman to stardom and set up the release of Bookend in the process. I asked Art Garfunkel how he had been fortunate enough to have the songs of Simon and Garfunkel spotlighted in the movie The Graduate.

Art Garfunkel:
Let’s see — it started with Mike reaching Paul saying “I want you to come see the Graduate because I see your music in it and I want you to write a couple of tunes.” And I had just come back from Europe and Paul was saying “there’s a very funny film with this new actor Dustin Hofman that Mike’s got me looking at. I’ve now seen it a whole bunch of times, come take a look.” And I saw it and laughed. And he said “Mike wants me to write 3 songs and he wants us to sing them. Here’s the deal and such.” And Paul wrote a song called Punky’s Dilemma which ended up on our Bookends album and Mike didn’t like it. It was meant to be, if you know the film the Graduate there’s a scene when Dustin is home from college and he’s floating in his pool on a float, and so Punky’s Dilemma........ “wish I was a Kellogg’s cornflake floatin’ in my bowl takin' movies”..... kind of a slow jazz campy hip tune. Mike didn’t quite like it.

would be this scene?
Wish I was a Kellogg’s Cornflake
Floatin’ in my bowl takin’ movies,
Relaxin’ awhile, livin’ in style,
Talkin’ to a raisin who 'casion’ly plays L.A.,
Casually glancing at his toupee.

Wish I was an English muffin
'Bout to make the most out of a toaster.

I’d ease myself down,
Comin’ up brown.

I prefer boysenberry
More than any ordinary jam.
I’m a "Citizens for Boysenberry Jam" fan.

Ah, South California.

If I become a first lieutenant
Would you put my photo on your piano?
To Maryjane —
Best wishes, Martin.
(Old Roger draft-dodger
Leavin’ by the basement door),
Everybody knows what he’s
Tippy-toeing down there for

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