Studio album by Simon & Garfunkel
Released April 3, 1968
Recorded September 1966, January 1967, June 1967, October 1967 - February 1968
Genre Folk rock
Length 29:51
Label Columbia
Producer Simon & Garfunkel
Roy Halee
Simon & Garfunkel chronology
The Graduate
Bridge Over Troubled Water

Bookends is the fourth studio album by Simon & Garfunkel, released on April 3, 1968 by Columbia Records. It was produced by Paul Simon, Roy Halee and Art Garfunkel.

The songs of the first side of the album follow a unified concept, exploring a life journey from childhood to old age, while the second side contained unused songs intended for The Graduate soundtrack.

Bookends was a #1 hit on Billboard's (North America) Pop Albums chart, as well as in the UK. Four singles charted: "A Hazy Shade of Winter", "At the Zoo", "Fakin' It" and "Mrs Robinson," which peaked at #13, #16 and #23 and #1, respectively.

In 2003, the TV network VH1 named Bookends the 93rd greatest album of all time. In 2003, the album was ranked number 233 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.[1]



Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Rolling Stone (not rated) [2]
Allmusic 5/5 stars [3]
Blender (magazine) 5/5 stars [4]
  • LP: Columbia KCL-2729 (mono)/KCS 9529 (stereo) - This was the last Simon and Garfunkel album to be released in both mono and stereo. The mono version was pressed in a limited quantity and is considered a rare item amongst record collectors. The mono release also has many sonic differences, most noticeably Paul Simon's trailing echo on "Fakin' It". The song has been released on the 1999 CD compilation The Best of Simon and Garfunkel.
  • CD: Columbia CK 09529; Remastered CD: Columbia 66003
  • The album was also released on the MFSL Ultradisc CD series.

The songs

The album begins softly with the song "Bookends Theme", but takes a heavier turn with the second track, "Save the Life of My Child", which uses the sounds of a distorted synthesizer and is a noted departure from the softer sound that was the signature of the duo. "Save the Life of My Child" also features a sample from their single "The Sounds of Silence", and includes a bass synthesizer sound personally set up by Bob Moog himself.[5][6] The album also features the single "Mrs. Robinson", which was famous for its inclusion in the film The Graduate.

"Overs", "Punky's Dilemma", and "A Hazy Shade of Winter" were also written by Simon for The Graduate soundtrack, but the film's producers rejected them.[citation needed] They spent over 50 studio hours recording "Punky's Dilemma."[7]

Side One of the Bookends album follows a life journey, beginning with soft instrumentals ("Bookends Theme") giving rise to a mother's cries to save her own child's innocence ("Save the Life of My Child"). The search for a place to find acceptance is captured in "America", leading to the struggle with possible estrangement in "Overs". "Voices of Old People" is a haunting realization of aging, giving rise to "Old Friends", with the bookends tunes serving as literal bookends to the life cycle.

A 2001 CD reissue of the album includes two bonus tracks: "You Don't Know Where Your Interest Lies" (originally issued as a B-side to the "Fakin' It" single) and a demo version of "Old Friends."

The "Bookends Theme" was featured during the opening scene of the film Girl, Interrupted, and "Bookends" in the denouement of the film 500 Days of Summer. The song was also included on the Stacey Kent album The Boy Next Door (2003).

Track listing

All songs written and composed by Paul Simon, except where noted. 

Side One
No. Title Length
1. "Bookends Theme"   0:32
2. "Save the Life of My Child"   2:49
3. "America"   3:34
4. "Overs"   2:14
5. "Voices of Old People" (Paul Simon/Art Garfunkel) 2:36
6. "Old Friends"   2:36
7. "Bookends"   1:16
Side Two
No. Title Length
1. "Fakin' It"   3:14
2. "Punky's Dilemma"   2:10
3. "Mrs. Robinson"   4:02
4. "A Hazy Shade of Winter"   2:17
5. "At the Zoo"   2:21
Bonus Tracks (2001 CD reissue)
No. Title Length
13. "You Don't Know Where Your Interest Lies"   2:19
14. "Old Friends (Demo)"   2:11

Chart positions


Chart (1968) Peak
Australian Albums Chart 3
French Album Charts 3
German Album Charts 40
UK Album Charts 1[8]
US Album Charts 1



  1. ^ [1][dead link]
  2. ^ Rolling Stone Review
  3. ^ Allmusic Review
  4. ^ Blender (magazine) Review
  5. ^ Trevor Pinch, Frank Trocco. Analog Days: The Invention and Impact of the Moog Synthesizer. Harvard University Press, 2004.]
  6. ^ Universal Audio Webzine | UA Heritage
  7. ^ Simon & Garfunkel interviewed on the Pop Chronicles (1969).
  8. ^ "Chart Stats - Simon & Garfunkel - Bookends". Retrieved 5 June 2011. 
Preceded by
The Graduate (soundtrack)
by Various artists
Billboard 200 number-one album
May 25 - June 14, 1968
June 29 - July 26, 1968
Succeeded by
The Beat of the Brass
by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass
Preceded by
Delilah by Tom Jones
Delilah by Tom Jones
UK Albums Chart number-one album
17 August 1968 - 21 September 1968
28 September 1968 - 12 October 1968
Succeeded by
Delilah by Tom Jones
Hollies' Greatest by The Hollies

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Bookends — Album par Simon et Garfunkel Sortie 3 avril 1968 Enregistrement septembre 1966, janvier 1967, juin 1967, octobre 1967 – février 1968 Durée 29:13 Genre …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Bookends — Studioalbum von Simon and Garfunkel Veröffentlichung 1968 Label Columbia Records …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • bookends — UK [ˈbʊkendz] US [ˈbʊkˌendz] noun [plural] a pair of objects that you put at each end of a row of books to stop them from falling over Thesaurus: describing books and relating to bookshyponym parts of booksmeronym …   Useful english dictionary

  • Bookends — Este artículo o sección necesita referencias que aparezcan en una publicación acreditada, como revistas especializadas, monografías, prensa diaria o páginas de Internet fidedignas. Puedes añadirlas así o avisar …   Wikipedia Español

  • bookends — n. a pair of bookends * * * a pair of bookends …   Combinatory dictionary

  • bookends — noun An ace and a ten as a starting hand in Texas hold em as the cards are the first and last in a top straight …   Wiktionary

  • bookends — book|ends [ buk,endz ] noun plural a pair of objects that you put at each end of a row of books to stop them from falling over …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • bookends — n. heavy object used to support a row of books …   English contemporary dictionary

  • bookends — UK [ˈbʊkendz] / US [ˈbʊkˌendz] noun [plural] a pair of objects that you put at each end of a row of books to stop them from falling over …   English dictionary

  • bookends —   a term denoting scenes at the beginning and end of a film that complement each other and help tie a film together; aka framing device   Example: the view of Xanadu s gate in Citizen Kane (1941) …   Glossary of cinematic terms

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.