Arthur Ira Garfunkel (born 5 November 1941) is an American singer and actor, best known as half of the folk duo Simon & Garfunkel. Arthur Ira Garfunkel was born in Forest Hills, Queens, New York, in New York City. He is of Romanian Jewish ancestry. He met his future singing partner, Paul Simon, in the sixth grade. Between 1956 and 1962, the two had performed together as Tom & Jerry. Garfunkel ("Tom Graph") chose his nickname because he liked to track, or "graph" hits, on the pop charts.