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Silence Like A Cancer Grows> it was about the Coup of '63

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Weird how I did not know this until today.


In my opinion Jefferson Morely's claim that "Simon & Garfunkel’s 'The Sound of Silence' was a response to JFK’s assassination" is overstated and misleading.

According to the website Songfacts, Simon said this in an interview with Terry Gross of NPR:

I think about songs that it's not just what the words say but what the melody says and what the sound says. My thinking is that if you don't have the right melody, it really doesn't matter what you have to say, people don't hear it. They only are available to hear when the sound entrances and makes people open to the thought. Really the key to 'The Sound Of Silence' is the simplicity of the melody and the words, which are youthful alienation. It's a young lyric, but not bad for a 21-year-old. It's not a sophisticated thought, but a thought that I gathered from some college reading material or something. It wasn't something that I was experiencing at some deep, profound level - nobody's listening to me, nobody's listening to anyone - it was a post-adolescent angst, but it had some level of truth to it and it resonated with millions of people. Largely because it had a simple and singable melody."


(Apologies for the cut and paste yellow background)

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Interesting. I have always loved that song. Thought it brilliant and profound when it came out and I too thought it referred to the darkness the world was experiencing. I wonder from where Morley got his view point on this still relevant piece of music.


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Jeff's article includes the following source link..


I read that before I posted. I presumed others did as well. That Associated Press source wrote:

"Their song 'The Sound of Silence' from the aftermath of President Kennedy’s assassination 50 years ago this year had initially flopped — but it became a hit

after it was re-edited as a single"

Morley's conclusion that the song was a response to the JFK assassination is not quite warranted.

That story was all over the news wires.



Here is someone else who claimed it was "written in response to the assassination of President John F Kennedy."

He may have based his conclusion on the same Associated Press article that Jeff Morley referenced.


It almost goes without saying that internet news sources are not always reliable.

As you well know Larry, it's one thing to have a source. It's another thing to apply logic and fact check that source.

If someone can show that Paul Simon ever indicated that writing The Sound of Silence was a response to the JFK assassination, that would be a credible source.

And lastly, if it had been a response to the JFK assassination, chances are we would have heard of it long before now.

Edited by Michael Hogan
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Michael, I don't really have any thoughts on it other than the fact that the quotes from the artist don't seem to say that it was JFK related,

which I find strange. I only posted it in response Dawn's comment on wondering where he got it - its pretty clear where he got it, its

not clear to me that its correct.

-- Larry

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