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Aztec Two-Step 2.0 and Simon & Garfunkel

The Simon & Garfunkel Songbook: An Evening of Songs & Stories featuring Aztec Two-Step 2.0 w narration by Tony Traguardo

This is a different type of blog. I am biased as I have been a fan of Aztec Two-Step since the 70’s. Much of the information comes from the website. Bottom line… great show (bias)!


The Venue

Tarrytown Music Hall was built in 1885 by chocolate magnate William L Wallace.  The Music Hall was designed by distinguished architects Theodore De Lemos and August Cordes who also built New York City’s Grand Central Palace and the Macy’s building at Herald Square. It was opened during Tarrytown’s “Millionaire’s Colony” era when prominent families like the Rockefellers, Goulds, and Vanderbilts resided in the town and gathered at the Music Hall for its lavish balls, flower shows and concerts. The first event at the Music Hall was a new Gilbert & Sullivan opera called The Mikado on December 12, 1885. in 2022, The Music Hall was honored to be the first establishment in our district to be added to the NYS Historic Business Preservation Registry


Yes, the place is old, but it is quite comfortable. Parking is tough, so expect to walk a couple of blocks to the Music Hall, unless you get lucky.


About the Show 

This unique and entertaining music and multimedia event chronicles the extraordinary career of Simon & Garfunkel. The music speaks for itself, anchored by Rex Fowler, co-founder of the renowned folk/rock duo Aztec Two-Step, and his wife, Dodie Pettit, an original cast member of Broadway’s The Phantom of The Opera. The show’s storyline was originally created by Pete Fornatale, the late great pioneer of progressive FM radio and author of Simon & Garfunkel’s Bookends biography. Now telling the stories, emceeing and directing the engaging and amusing multimedia show is Fornatale’s dear friend and protégé, Tony Traguardo, WCWP-fm radio host, noted rock music historian, podcaster and founding board member of the Long Island Music Hall of Fame. Nostalgia and laughter abound, and a sing a-long is always in the mix!


“It was a great night of stories and songs... outstanding performances with insightful, entertaining musings......Wonderful, wonderful!! The audience just loved every minute of it!” - Barbara Lavery, Director, Bendheim Performing Arts Center, Scarsdale NY  

About Aztec Two-Step 2.0 

The story of Aztec Two-Step is intertwined with the history of folk/rock music in America. Originating from a chance meeting at an “open mic night” in Boston in 1971, then taking their name from a poem by beat poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Rex Fowler and Neal Shulman went on to record four albums on Elektra & RCA Records, helping to usher the music of the 60’s into the 1970s and beyond. The duo performed worldwide, was critically acclaimed in major U.S. newspapers, reviewed in Rolling Stone Magazine, and appeared on numerous radio and TV shows including The King Biscuit Flower Hour, World Cafe Live and David Letterman, as well as winning the New York Music Award for Best Folk Album for their 1986 release Living in America. With a career built on progressive FM and college radio and non-stop touring over five decades, the duo appeared in concert with The Band, Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, Donovan, Judy Collins, Jackson Browne, Seals and Crofts, Carly Simon, Heart, Orleans, The Beach Boys and so many more.   

After 47 years, Neal retired in 2018 and Rex has continued their musical legacy with his new expanded band Aztec Two-Step 2.0, alongside his wife Dodie Pettit - an accomplished singer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and an original cast member of Broadway’s Phantom of the Opera as well as other Tony Award winning productions. Together they are the heart and soul of Aztec Two-Step 2.0. This new incarnation of Aztec Two-Step continues to impress audiences with dazzling musicianship, intelligent songwriting, and soaring harmonies. They have recaptured the multi-layered dimension of Rex & Neal’s original studio recordings, performing favorite ATS classics and old forgotten gems, as well as continuing on with their renowned Simon & Garfunkel Songbook show. Nostalgia and laughter abound, and a sing a-long is always in the mix! 


Show trailer


Rex Fowler is the lead singer for Aztec Two-Step. He is a kind soul who I met for the first time at a concert at the Shaboo Inn in Willimantic while in college. His wife Dodie and he, I was told, now live in Bridgeport.


Old Friends

There was a moment in the show that puts time in perspective. The song Old Friends off the Bookends album was that moment. Paul Simon was in his early 20’s when he wrote the song about two friends sitting on a park bench, like bookends. Can you tell which lyrics I am referring to?




Old friendsOld friendsSat on their park benchLike bookendsA newspaper blown through the grassFalls on the round toesOn the high shoesOf the old friends

Old friendsWinter companionsThe old menLost in their overcoatsWaiting for the sunsetThe sounds of the citySifting through treesSettle like dustOn the shouldersOf the old friends

Can you imagine usYears from todaySharing a park bench quietly?How terribly strangeTo be seventy

Old friendsMemory brushes the same yearsSilently sharing the same fear

Time it was,And what a time it wasIt was . . .A time of innocenceA time of confidences

Long ago . . . it must be . . .I have a photographPreserve your memoriesThey’re all that’s left you


Two America’s? No, Not That!

Aztec Two-Step and Aztec Two-Step 2.0 were and remain fabulous to listen to. You would be happy to ask Alexa or Siri to shuffle songs by them and be pleasantly surprised by their music. During the show they played two of their songs. One of their songs, ‘Living in America’, they played after singing the Simon & Garfunkel hit, ‘America’. Below are the links to those two songs off YouTube. Enjoy!


Simon & Garfunkel’s - America


Aztec Two-Step’s – Living In America


Biased Conclusion

Loved the show and enjoyed the Music Hall.




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