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Monday, 22 October 2012
A Tribute to the Late, Great George Harrison
Photo courtesy of FriendGrief.com
Some musicians might say that the song Something was one of the greatest love ballads written in the past fifty years; in-fact Frank Sinatra, who was no fan of rock and roll said those exact words. One of the most powerful love songs in music history, so simple, yet tender and emotive. It is absolutely fitting that this song was written by a former Beatle, the late, great George Harrison. Most Beatles fans will never forget the day they heard about his death and George Harrison’s untimely, tragic passing on at only fifty-eight years of age has left fans feeling deep sadness, a huge sense of loss and a determination to hang on to those vivid memories of the glory days. The magical memories of
Harrison’s Beatles days
and his subsequent career thereafter will be with the fans forever as will the
precious gift of his music. The song Something was probably his best work,
along with Here Comes the Sun, While my
Guitar Gently Weeps, and My Sweet
Lord. All remarkable, influential,
artistic and thought provoking songs.
‘Typically George,’ some might say.
John Lennon was even quoted as saying that Something was the best track on the album Abbey Road.
George Harrison was portrayed as the quiet, enigmatic Beatle. What is it they say about the quiet ones? George Harrison was an extremely remarkable person, who lived ‘a charmed life.’ He was part of the biggest, most popular bands in music history. His music can be described as very spiritual, uplifting and moving, not as
romantic and hearfelt
like some of McCartney’s ballads. Just
different, exceptional in it’s own way.
McCartney and Lennon would have to be the two most talented singer/song writers this world has ever seen and there is little doubt that we will never witness talents like theirs again. Of the four Beatles, they were so different in their style of musical ability and personality. Paul McCartney, the
Lennon the peace-maker, the mischievous and lovable drummer Ringo Starr and
George Harrison the spiritualist. Put
them all together in a rock n roll band spanning almost a decade and the rest
as they say is history. Their coming
together, produced some of the most significant and inspiring music that would
affect people in so many different ways.
Music that was impossible not to dance to, or to sing to, or to grab a
guitar and jam with. Most music lovers
can relate to just sitting back and letting those familiar haunting chills take
over, a feeling that would stir the soul and invoke a passion that was just
Getting back to George Harrison, his death came almost twenty one years to the day that John Lennon was shot. Lennon’s death affected all Beatles fans more than they would care to remember, as it was such a huge shock. In
Harrison’s case, the fans
knew he was gravely ill and that his death was inevitable. All the same it is unbearable to think that
he’s gone and now only two Beatles remain.
Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr.
Its possible that, McCartney and Starr hate being referred to as the two
remaining Beatles. George Harrison was
once quoted as saying that he hated being referred to as a Beatle. McCartney and Starr’s lives have gone in
different directions since the good old days in the sixties. They have fulfilled many goals in their
careers and they probably wish that all Beatle’s fans would stop living in the
past. The problem is; the fans cannot
and never will and there are different generations of fans who love the
The Beatles probably have at least three generations of fans now. Many of their fans were not even born when the Beatles split up and went their separate ways. Nevertheless, McCartney and Starr would be correct, it isn’t healthy to live in the past, but reminiscing is a different story.
George Harrison realised his potential a long time before McCartney and Lennon even considered including much of
Harrison’s music on a
Beatles album. After splitting with
model Pattie Boyd, whom the song “Something”
relates to. He married for the second
time, to secretary Olivia Arias and they had a son, Dhani. Dhani would be Harrison’s only
child. His solo career was the first to
take off and the success of his album ‘ ’ was
phenomenal. He was the first Beatle to
release a number one hit with My Sweet
Lord. He proceeded to make many more
albums and he also became involved in the movies as a producer, he founded the
company Handmade films, that made the Monty Python movies, amongst others. What is really ironic is that George was the
quiet Beatle and yet the most successful directly after the split and what’s
more it is possible that his many other successes such as his career producing
films and the success with the Travelling Wilbury’s in the 1990’s were not even
acknowledged by many fans, possibly only the most dedicated fans. The remaining three Beatles eventually
reunited in the 1990’s when Anthology was released and tracks previously not
released were performed by George, Paul and Ringo, including two songs written
by Lennon, “Real Love” and “Free as a Bird.”
George Harrison had more talent still there to give the world and yet
fate chose to cut his wonderful life so dreadfully short. All Things Must Pass
This is a matter of opinion, but “Something” will probably be the song that stands out amongst all the music he wrote whilst with the Beatles and as a solo artist, for its moving quality and simplicity. This song sums up everything in three small verses and a forceful, intense bridge. “You’re asking me will my love will grow, I don’t know, I don’t know!” The way
Harrison executes these
lyrics and his brilliant guitar work throughout the song just blows the
mind. George Harrison was a special
human being, a person with rare gifts and a beautiful mind. Man, he was Something!
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Copyright ©2001 Janelle Coulton