Art Garfunkel opens up about his 45-year feud with Paul Simon

Music 27/05/2015

Their stormy relationship has been well documented for decades. 

But rather than close the book on his feud with former bandmate Paul Simon, Art Garfunkel has thrown another jibe in his direction. Describing the other half of his legendary musical duo, the 73-year-old has said his kindness towards Simon 'created a monster'. 

In an interview with The Sunday Telegraph, the artist said: ‘I don’t want to say any anti Paul Simon things, but it seems very perverse to not enjoy the glory and walk away.’ He added: ‘How can you walk away from this lucky place on top of the world, Paul? What’s going on with you, you idiot?’ 

When asked whether 5ft 3in Simon had might have a Napoleon complex, Garfunkel replied: 'I think you’re on to something. I would say so, yes.' He said he felt 'overshadowed' by his partner, also 73, likening his experience with that of George Harrison in The Beatles. 'George came up to me at a party once and said “my Paul is to me what your Paul is to you.”'He meant that psychologically they had the same effect on us. The Pauls sidelined us. I think George felt suppressed by Paul and I think that’s what he saw with me and my Paul.

'Here’s the truth: McCartney was a helluva music man who gave the band its energy, but he also ran away with a lot of the glory.'  Speaking of 'his' Paul, he said that he took pity on his friend for being teased for his height and started being kind towards him as 'compensation'. 'And that compensation gesture has created a monster. End of interview.' 

Simon and Garfunkel met at junior school in New York. The pair started trying to secure a record deal as teenagers and in the early 1960s released an unsuccessful debut album. One song on the album, The Sounds of Silence, was reworked and became an instant hit.  There followed a lengthy career which produced classic records including Bridge Over Troubled Water and Mrs Robinson.  

They split in 1970 after becoming embroiled in a bitter argument following the release of their seminal album Bridge Over Troubled Water. Speaking of the row last year, Garfunkel said: 'That was our worst-ever fight. After all that shouting we called it quits.’ Then in 2004 they embarked on a lucrative reunion tour. In 2010 they were due to perform more shows when Garfunkel suffered damage to his vocal chords. 

In a 2014 interview he said Simon offered little in the way of moral support when the show dates were cancelled. 'He wasn't particularly (supportive). But no, I’m not upset. 

‘But I’m used to the fact that we’re just different characters.’