Bridge Over Troubled Water is a popular song by Simon & Garfunkel. The song appeared on their fifth and final studio album, which was released in January 1970.
The song was written by Paul Simon.
According to Wikipedia, “The title lyric was inspired by Claude Jeter’s line “I’ll be your bridge over deep water if you trust in me,” which Jeter sang with his group, the Swan Silvertones, in the 1958 song “Mary Don’t You Weep.”
At first, Simon wanted Garfunkel to sing the song, but he didn’t feel the rendition was right. He suggested Simon sing it in his falsetto. Their producer suggested an extra verse and “bigger” ending be written. Simon wrote the final verse in reference to his wife at the time.
Simon even acknowledge Jeter by handing him a check for the song.
The song frayed relations, which eventually to the duo splitting. Simon later said, “He felt I should have done it, and many times on a stage, though, when I’d be sitting off to the side and Larry Knechtel would be playing the piano and Artie would be singing “Bridge”, people would stomp and cheer when it was over, and I would think, “That’s my song, man…”
The single won the 1971 Grammy Award for Record of the Year and Song of the Year.
Bridge Over Troubled Water became the biggest hit single for Simon & Garfunkel and is also considered as their signature song.
The song sold around 25 million records and was ranked on several lists, including at number 51 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Over fifty other artists have recorded the song including Aretha Franklin and Elvis Presley.