Art Garfunkel of the acclaimed American folk rock duo Simon & Garfunkel has arrived in Israel ahead of a June 10 concert in Tel Aviv.
"I'm very thrilled and full of jet lag," the 73-year-old singer, known for his pristine high harmonies, announced to reporters during a press conference at the Dan Tel Aviv Hotel.
"I feel I'm with my cousins, and my brothers, and my sisters, and my nieces and nephews and my job is to focus and to concentrate on being a good singer," Garfunkel, who is Jewish, added.
Performing in Israel for the first time since a concert in Tel Aviv in 1998, Garfunkel will take the stage at Bloomfield Stadium on Thursday.
When asked why it had taken him so long to return to Israel, Garfunkel joked, "well I had my laundry to do, I had to see the dentist, I had my private life, I don't know."
Explaining that he had been recuperating from a lost voice over the past four years, Garfunkel noted that prior to that he had been working a lot in Europe, the US, and Japan and just hadn't managed to make his way to the Jewish state.
"We Americans read about Israel and we get our impressions through the newspaper and it looks terribly dangerous to be here. And Israelis always tell me it's not like that, when you're in Israel you'll see, people are going on living."