On September 19, 1981, Simon and Garfunkel reunited for a free concert to restore New York City’s most famous park. The duo performed their greatest hits for more than 500,000 people, an iconic show that captured the attention of the world. Now 40 years later, both the performance and the music remain every bit as memorable.

Must-See Moments

Don't miss these five transcendent performance moments.

Up Next

Simon & Garfunkel
The Boxer

The duo basks in the wordless harmonies of “The Boxer.”

Full film available with subscription to Amazon Prime

Up Next

The Iconic Setlist

Get song-by-song insights from Greg Kot, Editorial Director.

A signature moment from “The Graduate” feels especially playful on this gorgeous evening.

Watch now on

Echoes of the Everly Brothers’ harmonies ring through this classic, somehow both hopeful and melancholy.

Watch now on

Can a song mirror the conflicted mood of a generation in search of its identity? The vocal blend hints that it can.

Watch now on

Cool touch to see and hear how Garfunkel layers his vocal countermelody over Simon’s and offers a new perspective on one of Simon’s solo hits.

Watch now on

Traditional ballad and by several centuries the oldest song performed this night, with understated beauty.

Watch now on

The “Scarborough Fair” B-side is possibly the evening’s most intimate moment, a throwback to the duo’s coffeehouse days with Simon finger-picking his acoustic guitar and Garfunkel on lead vocal.

Watch now on

Did someone mention the Everly Brothers? (See song No. 2 in the set list.)

Watch now on

Simon in the spotlight with Garfunkel back at the drum riser still engaged, mouthing the lyrics, but not otherwise involved in the arrangement. Of all Simon’s solo songs, this one is particularly suited to his conversational delivery, the lyrics a little bit wry, a little bit wistful, with a pinch of ruefulness.

Watch now on

This Simon solo hit, on the other hand, suits Garfunkel’s talents. Its world-weariness provides a poignant bookend to the Simon & Garfunkel standard “America” (see song No. 3).

Watch now on

A four-piece horn section stars on this blazing Latin-infused dance number from Simon’s “One-Trick Pony” album.

Watch now on

The 1977 Simon solo single fits the duo’s harmonies marvelously, a suggestion of what might have been had the two singers continued to collaborate through the ‘70s.

Watch now on

Garfunkel solo, performing the lead track from his 1981 album “Scissors Cut.”

Watch now on

Simon debuts a song that would be released on his forthcoming album, “Hearts and Bones,” marred by a disturbing moment when an intruder rushes the stage and is corralled by security guard before he can reach the singer. Simon looks slightly shook but never breaks stride.

Watch now on

As “Kodachrome” accelerates it transitions into Chuck Berry’s 1955 single on a wave of horns -- a thrilling moment.

Watch now on

Art takes Paul’s “little hymn” to the heavens. Garfunkel insisted back in the day that Simon write the third verse. “The song wants to be bigger,” Garfunkel said to his friend back then, as if anticipating moments just like this.

Watch now on

Steve Gadd’s iconic drum part is nearly as famous as Simon’s darkly humorous song about his divorce, which also turned out to be his biggest solo hit.

Watch now on

A little hiccup at the start brings a smile to both singers’ faces, but in no time they are slipping into this masterpiece from their final studio album together. The song took 100 hours to record, but here it sounds deceptively simple and stripped down.

Watch now on

Two voices and one acoustic guitar turn Central Park into the biggest folk coffeehouse in New York City.

Watch now on

Wordless harmonies, big smiles, basking in the huge crowd’s adoration.

Watch now on

The addition of a rock rhythm section turned this into a folk-rock hit in the ‘60s. Here, the duo does it folk-style, without any additional backing instruments, but the audience fills in with some unison clapping.

Watch now on

The song went over so well earlier in the concert, the duo couldn’t resist bringing it back for one more spin to send everyone home dancing.

Watch now on
1/21

A Remarkable Reunion After 9 Years

We use cookies and similar technologies to personalize your experiences. Read our cookie policy.