Of course, this is originally a Simon and Garfunkel song. However, for whatever reason, this is the version that I remember as a very little kid, so much so that when I finally got a Simon and Garfunkel CD with the song on it, I was sorely disappointed, thinking, “Well, what happened to the bassoon?” Yes, the song sounds very similar to the Simon and Garfunkel original, but while Simon and Garfunkel almost seem to treat it as a throwaway song, Harper’s Bizarre took it and fleshed it out gorgeously. It’s just one of those songs which represents happiness, even with the very dated terminology (which was dated even back to my early memories!)
Now, your ears aren’t deceiving you. This is a Simon & Garfunkel cover, covered by Paul McCartney and Wings, BUT it’s Denny Laine singing lead, not Paul McCartney.
Truth be told, I like the Simon and Garfunkel original, and I know it well, as I practically wore out my “Sounds of Silence” album back in the day. (Yes, I exaggerate, though I did purchase it first on vinyl.) What I like about this cover, though, is that Wings here is able to make the song – a song by an American songwriter based on a poem by an American poet – and turn it into something that sounds very British. There are so many British “struggle” songs, and they are a key component to British folk more generally, and this version here completely sounds like it belongs to this rich tradition. As dark as the song is, I actually think I like this version better.