“Hazy Shade Of Winter” by The Bangles (1987)

“Hazy Shade Of Winter” was originally written and recorded by Simon & Garfunkel in 1968. I initially became familiar with the song via The Bangles’ cover, which appeared on 1987’s soundtrack to the Robert Downey Jr. Less Than Zero and peaked at #2 on the Billboard charts early the following year. Having heard both versions many times over the ensuing thirty plus years, I’m still partial to the Bangles’ version. I think Rick Rubin’s tough production is what gives the more recent “Hazy Shade” the edge. When I think of Paul Simon, I don’t necessarily think “rocking” (although there are plenty of other complimentary things I think; after all, Paul Simon is one of my favorite songwriters of all time). The Rubin/Bangles take has a rough edge that provides a cool counterpoint to some very pretty harmonizing. You can’t go wrong with either version, though.

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