The Unsent Letter to Art Garfunkel I Found In a Record Sleeve
This past weekend I went digging for records at some thrift stores near my parent's house in Pearland. Yes, the fella who wrote a blog about needing to pare down his record collection went looking for more to add to his pile.
Inside a copy of Simon and Garfunkel's Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme I found an unsent letter to Mr. Art Garfunkel, one-half of the iconic folk-rock harmony duo, from a Sherry L. Jarrard of Dahlonega, Georgia, north of Gainesville.
The album, released in 1966, features the beloved cuts "Homeward Bound," "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)" and "Scarborough Fair."
Sure, I have found cool things in the record sleeves of used LPs, and most record-store owners have stories about things they have found inside boxes of albums they have bought up.
Vinal Edge's Chuck Roast has inherited tons of artifacts from previous owners.
"We've mainly found written-out lyrics, notes, old pictures, sports cards, occasionally drugs or the residue thereof," he says. "Recently a death certificate and all the receipts for the funeral home."
This letter, though, was more than just a gooey fan message. Jarrard was a teenager looking for clues inside the duo's music, beyond wanting to know why they were so "right on."
"People just don't understand the way I feel about things and I don't think they ever will," she writes.
Call them saccharine, but Simon & Garfunkel had an effect on listeners with their fragility and poetic wordplay. It's easy to see how a teen girl would find herself lost in them at a weird point in her adolescence. This wasn't a boy band fixated on puppy love and parties.
Jarrard thanks Garfunkel for reading the letter and responding, which he obviously never got to do since it was sitting inside the record sleeve.
"Your music will forever echo in my mind," Jarrard writes, closing her correspondence.
Hopefully we can get Garfunkel to see this and finally connect with Jarrard. I've already reached out to the two Sherry Jarrards I found on Facebook, and sent an email to Garfunkel, so who knows, maybe I could hear back from someone soon.