The Concert in Central Park is a live album by Simon & Garfunkel. On September 19, 1981 the folk-rock duo reunited for a free concert on the Great Lawn of New York's Central Park, attended by more than 500,000 people. They released a live album from the concert the following March (Warner Brothers LP 2BSK 3654; CD 3654). It was arranged by Paul Simon and Dave Grusin, and produced by Simon, Art Garfunkel, Phil Ramone and Roy Halee.
The concert was also shot on videotape, televised by HBO in 1982, and subsequently released on various home video formats. The VHS and DVD contain two songs that were omitted from the live album: "The Late Great Johnny Ace" and "Late in the Evening (Reprise)". "Johnny Ace" was disrupted by a fan rushing the stage and coming close to attacking Simon; coincidentally, the song is an elegy upon the murder of John Lennon several months earlier. "The Late Great Johnny Ace" is not listed in the track listing, appearing between "A Heart in New York" and "Kodachrome".
In addition to hit songs they had recorded as a duo, they performed duet versions of several of Simon's 1970s solo hits, including "Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard", "American Tune", "Late In the Evening", "Slip Sliding Away", and "Kodachrome".
The 8-track tape version of this album has the distinction of being one of the few 8-tracks that is arranged exactly like the album, with no song breaks.
In his Rolling Stone review of the album, Stephen Holden wrote:
Even though a decade of solo projects had separated them, their musical relationship seemed essentially unchanged. Garfunkel's pristine, quivering folk-pop tenor filtered Simon's wry, angst-ridden musings into a romantic soft focus, and the duo's close harmonies transformed dark compositions of doubt into warm exchanges of feeling.
All songs by Paul Simon except where noted.
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