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Song For The Asking
ROIO - Recordings Of Illegitimate Origin

Title Village Vanguard
Label Head
Catalog Number [none]
Source Tracks 1-3: studio outtakes, 1966-67.
Tracks 4-11: live in Carbondale, IL, 8 November 1969.
Tracks 12-17: "Sing Out" TV spacial, 1966.
Tracks 18-21: studio rehearsals, 1965-66. Tracks 22-27: "Wednesday Morning 3 A.M." BBC radio special, 1965.
Mastered from soundboard tapes, off-line and off-air sources.
Performers Paul Simon - guitar, vocals
Art Garfunkel - vocals
X-Ref Tracks 22-27: Far East Reunion
Quality VG+ to SUP-/8.0-9.5
studio outtakes 1966-67:
1. You Don't Know Where Your Interest Lies (2:36)
2. For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her (2:12)
3. Overs (take 13 - "Time Song") (2:16)

Carbondale, IL, 8 November 1969
1. Homeward Bound (3:27)
2. At The Zoo (2:19)
3. America (3:37)
4. The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy) (2:13)
5. Song For The Asking (2:00)
6. A Poem On The Underground Wall (2:38)
7. For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her (3:32)
8. Anji (2:38)

"Sing Out" TV special 1966:
1. Richard Cory (3:14)
2. The Sound Of Silence (3:14)
3. Homeward Bound (2:26)
4. A Most Peculiar Man (2:10)
5. He Was My Brother (2:33)
6. I Am A Rock (2:41)

studio rehearsals 1965-66:
1. I Wish You Could Be Here (1:45)
2. Blessed (3:22)
3. Bad News Feeling (2:06)
4. Cloudy (2:06)

WM3AM BBC special:
1. Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound (Tom Paxton) (2:38)
2. Sparrow (2:54)
3. The Side Of A Hill (2:27)
4. I Am A Rock (3:05)
5. A Church Is Burning (3:48)
6. Anji (0:41)
Total Time 70:51
A new disc for the end of 1999, Village Vanguard gathers a lot of important material, some fairly common to the ROIO collector, some new to the more "public" ROIO market.

The various studio outtakes and rehearsals have appeared before on other releases in the same sound quality. The most striking of these is "Overs," which has a unique organ line and very early lyrics - vastly diferent from the final version of the song. It's nice to get "Bad News Feeling" and "I Wish You Could Be Here" with Paul Simon performing - the latter is more commonly available in a version by The Cyrkle.

The highlight of this disc is the 9 November 1969 material. This concert, performed a few days prior to the Miami University show and immediately after the wrap of principal recording for Bridge Over Troubled Water, has a high energy level. This show was likely the first live performance of "Song For The Asking," as Artie notes that Paul "just finished" the song. Unlike the Miami University show, there is no backing band here, likely due to the fact that studio recording took place in Los Angeles the day before this show. The recording quality of this section is the best on the disc, though not as clean as that of the aforementioned Miami U. show.

The other material on this disc - the "Sing Out" TV show and the BBC programme - are well-done, though the recording quality is typical of any off-air recording of the time: fairly low-fidelity, but quite listenable.

This disc is a great find, and will please many S&G fans.

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