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Aug 2, 2022

"Bridge Over Troubled Water"



How difficult it is to give way to the left hemisphere of my brain to try to write, when this song crossed, from the first day I heard it, the limits of my reason, and when it is only emotions that keep it permanently alive within me. An impossible song to forget, the most beautiful song to friendship ever written. A melody that takes us to the most heartfelt songs of faith and the most fervent gospel spirit. And a letter in which Elvis transmits his passion, his pure soul, his deep feeling towards his neighbor... 

"When you're weary

Feeling small

When tears are in your eyes

I'll dry them all

I'm on your side

Oh, when times get rough

And friends just can't be found

Like a bridge over troubled water

I will lay me down

Like a bridge over troubled water

I will lay me down..."

And that was what he did, give us all the best of himself and build us that bridge, so that through him we could take his hand. Through his voice he gave us everything he had inside, his altruism, his passion, his infinite love, his immense spirituality. We can go through his skin and be inside him, just by listening to him, and even feel his own redemption, his own salvation and his refuge, and how he also clings to our hand, in also seeks to receive our consolation. Elvis made it totally his own and with his interpretation he took it to another plane totally different from the one that Garfunkel had already interpreted... 

The song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" was recorded by Elvis on Friday, June 5, 1970 at RCA's Nashville Studio B, and was released on the "That's The Way It Is" album in November 1970. The song featured on the album, we can hear it with applause at the end, but this applause was added later, with the intention of the colonel and Felton Jarvis, to make it appear that the song had been recorded live.

 It was written by Paul Simon in 1969, originally recorded by Garfunkel and released in January 1970, a few months before Elvis recorded it. The original reached number 1 on the US Hot 100, and won several Grammy Awards, including Best Album of the Year. When it was being composed, both Garfunkel and producer Roy Halee thought the song needed a third verse and more sound towards the end of it. Simon agreed and wrote the final verse. It is very beautiful how Paul Simon was inspired to compose this last verse, when he saw his wife looking in the mirror seeing how her first white hair had turned out..."Sail on silver girl... Sail on by..."

When Elvis settled into Nashville's B studio and got in front of the microphone to record the first take of "Bridge Over Troubled Water", perhaps no one could have been aware of the growth in intensity, force and grandeur that this song would reach. as Elvis was enlarging her with each live performance, until making her reach the sublime in his performances. 

As the song grows, the backup singers play an increasingly important role. The orchestral element, the band... and the grandeur of Elvis's voice raise the energy and the singing to a frenzy. 

No one could say it better than Paul Simon himself: "When I first heard Elvis perform 'Bridge Over Troubled Water,' it was amazing. I thought to myself, 'How the hell can I compete with that?' 

Simon was always very proud that Elvis will perform his song. A song that became a regular in their concerts, and that Elvis carried in his heart and in his repertoires until the end in his last concert at the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis, on June 26, 1977. It was always "his Bridge", as he used to say to his musicians to give them the intro in his shows. 

His Bridge, our Bridge... A hymn for eternity.

Information provided by "ELVIS. The Boy From Tupelo"



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