By the grace of Ray Phiri
HOW many years ago was it that the album called Bridge Over Troubled Water was released?
This was the last album done by the duet Simon & Garfunkel before they parted ways. If you’re younger than 50, then this may not be a memory for you.
The answer is 47 years ago. This vinyl long-playing (LP) record came out in January 1970 and was an immediate hit.
Both the album and the song won Grammy awards for album of the year and song of the year.
Altogether the album won an unprecedented six Grammys that year. It was also the 17th most popular album of the ’70s decade.
Apart from Bridge, the album also contained their hit song from the previous year called The Boxer as well as El Condor Pasa and Cecilia, two very memorable songs of that decade. The well-known Bye Bye Love, was on it, too. This was a nod to The Everly Brothers, the famous singing duo of the 1950s, whom this duo emulated. The grey-tops should remember them as well. To my mind, Paul Simon was never as great again until his Graceland album of two decades ago. But he had Ray Phiri and other South Africans to thank for its success.