"Bridge over Troubled Water" is the title song of Simon & Garfunkel's final album together, released January 26, 1970, though it also appears on the live album "Simon & Garfunkel, Live 1969." It reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on February 28, 1970, and stayed at the top of the chart for six weeks. "Bridge over Troubled Water" also topped the adult contemporary chart in the U.S. for six weeks.
This song's recording process exposed many of the underlying tensions that eventually led to the breakup of the duo after the album's completion. Most notably, Paul Simon has repeatedly expressed regret over his insistence that Art Garfunkel sing this song as a solo, as it focused attention on Garfunkel and relegated Simon to a secondary position. Art Garfunkel initially did not want to sing lead vocal, feeling it was not right for him. "He felt I should have done it," Paul Simon revealed to Rolling Stone in 1972.
Garfunkel said that the moment when he performed it in Madison Square Garden in 1972 was "almost biblical."
In recent performances on the "Old Friends" tour, Simon and Garfunkel have taken turns singing alternate verses of the vocal.