Arguably one of the most gifted songwriters of his generation, George Harrison created some incredible tracks.
George Harrison – My Sweet Lord (Official Music Video)
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of George Harrison‘s classic solo album, All Things Must Pass is celebrated with a suite of new releases including a stunning new mix of the classic album by Grammy Award-winning mixer/engineer Paul Hicks, overseen by executive producer Dhani Harrison.
Ringo Starr, Fred Armisen and Jon Hamm star in new George Harrison video for ‘My Sweet Lord’
There is a new official music video for George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord.”
The video, which comes 51 years after the song’s release, stars former Beatle Ringo Starr, along with a slew of musicians, actors and comedians who make cameos.
Joe Walsh and Jeff Lynne, who played with Harrison in the Traveling Wilburys appear. Harrison’s wife Olivia and son Dhani also appear.
The video also features cameos from Patton Oswalt, Taika Waititi, Vanessa Bayer, Mark Hamill, Sam Richardson, Atsuko Okatsuka, Rosanna Arquette, Brandon Wardell, Anders Holm, Moshe Kasher, Natasha Legerro, Reggie Watts, Tim Heidecker, Paul Scheer, Darren Criss and “Weird Al” Yankovic.
Though he released a pair of experimental albums prior to this release, All Things Must Pass marked the first major solo output from Harrison following the breakup of The Beatles, and came amid a year in which each of his bandmates also released solo records to mark their own paths forward in the aftermath of the group’s dissolution.
It has gone on to be one of the most enduring works by a former Beatle, particularly thanks to the title track and “My Sweet Lord,” which remains a beloved Harrison solo track.
Now we just have to wait for the 50th anniversary of the Cloud Nine album so this same group of celebrities can get together and make a tribute to “Got My Mind Set On You.”
Greatest George Harrison Songs
Arguably one of the most gifted songwriters of his generation, George Harrison created some incredible tracks.
Never viewed as the principal songwriter of The Beatles – even after displaying the supreme talent he had at his disposal – Harrison is rightly seen as having a bad deal. Stuck alongside two of the greatest pop songwriters of all time, Harrison was always likely to struggle to assert himself. However, eventually, the cracks in the Harrison dam began to show and once one song arrived, more and more flowed through. It would accelerate the end of the Beatles and his own beginnings with his solo career.
Whether it be with The Beatles or out on his own solo material, Harrison had a unique vision when creating music.
The artist was able, unlike any other, to put the most complex and grandiose themes and ideas into sweetly wrapped morsels of musical gold. With a gentle touch and a completely captivating tone that felt both comforting and guiding, Harrison quickly became one of the most revered songwriters of his generation. It was a giant transformation from the Quiet Beatle tag that he was always labelledwith. Below, we’ve picked 20 of our favourite George Harrison songs.
Naturally, being a part of the biggest band to ever walk the earth is quite some moment to have on your CV. But, in truth, some of Harrison’s best work came from his solo efforts. Much of that was down to being behind John Lennon and Paul McCartney in the songwriting pecking order within the band.
“George got stuck with being the Beatle that had to fight to get songs on records because of Lennon and McCartney. Well, who wouldn’t get stuck?” Bob Dylan once said in a 2007 interview. It’s hard to argue with, it must’ve been relatively stifling to sit between two such musical powerhouses as John and Paul. “If George had had his own group and was writing his own songs back then, he’d have been probably just as big as anybody,” Dylan added.
In 1970, following The Beatles disbandment, Harrison did just that and released one of the most poignant albums of any Beatles solo career with the brilliant LP All Things Must Pass. He then went one further and created a chart-topping new album in 1987 with Cloud Nine.
Between those LPs and his work on The Beatles later output, Harrison can boast some of the most beautiful songs ever written. Here are 20 of the best.
George Harrison Greatest Hits
Best Songs of George Harrison Music Playlist
George Harrison’s 20 best songs:
20. ‘Bangla Desh’
One of Harrison’s crowning achievements in music is not a song or album but arranging the first-ever concert benefit with The Concert For Bangladesh, an event that saw a plethora of stars take to the stage in support of the war-torn country. This standalone single was released by Harrison to raise money and awareness for the stricken country.
19. ‘Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)’
As The Beatles drew to a close, Harrison was diving deeper and deeper into his spirituality.
In the 1973 effort Living In A Material World (you’re welcome, Madonna), Harrison had completely committed himself to Hinduism as a form of solitude from the craziness of being one of the Fab Four.
18. ‘It’s All Too Much’
“‘It’s All Too Much’ was written in a childlike manner from realisations that appeared during and after some LSD experiences and which were later confirmed in meditation,” Harrison once said of the Yellow Submarine song.
17. ‘Simply Shady’
Reflecting on Harrison’s work it becomes quite easy to pick out central themes. There’s spirituality, humanity, love, kindness, and in ‘Simply Shady’, the darker side of rock and roll. George himself once described the track as “what happens to naughty boys in the music business” and sees him at his most confessional.
16. ‘The Inner Light’
Another of Harrison’s archetypal spiritual songs, this one was concerned not with Indian teachings but that of the Taoist guide to living, Tao Te Ching. The track was released as the B-side to ‘Lady Madonna’.
It is true that Harrison was far more concerned with inner peace than conquering the globe and he made his feelings clear on songs like ‘Taxman’ and ‘Piggies’. Both written in 1966, it would take two more years for ‘Piggies’ to find a home on The White Album.
14. ‘Got My Mind Set On You’
One of the most infectious songs ever written was expertly performed by Harrison on his 1987 chart-topping album Cloud Nine.
Originally written by Rudy Clark, the song saw Harrison back in the charts after a five-year hiatus. It may not be Harrison’s coolest release but certainly is one of the most played.
13. ‘Wah Wah’
“At that point in time, Paul couldn’t see beyond himself,” Harrison told Guitar World in 2001. “He was on a roll, but…in his mind, everything that was going on around him was just there to accompany him. He wasn’t sensitive to stepping on other people’s egos or feelings.”
12. ‘Think For Yourself’
It took a little while for the spiritual and sublime songwriting talent of George Harrison to emerge from The Beatles. Harrison, often dubbed the ‘Quiet Beatle’, was being rather more contemplative than subdued as he soon delivered a plethora of songs, both with and without The Beatles, that would concern the spiritual balance of the modern world. One of his first songs for the band was similarly steeped in the subtleties of spirituality and turned pop music on its head upon its release.
11. ‘I Me Mine’
This was the very last song The Beatles ever worked on and is depicted in the Let It Be movie. It saw the Fab Four gather at the iconic Abbey Road studios early in 1970 and complete the track. With Lennon arriving in full peace campaign regalia, the song is the final moment of harmony between the group.
10. ‘Isn’t It A Pity’
One guaranteed way to check to see if your song is a great one is to see who else has enjoyed both listening or performing it. If Harrison was to have looked around, he would have noticed that only the very best had ever taken on his song ‘Isn’t It A Pity’. The track, most notably covered by Nina Simone, is a classic Harrison effort. Dripping in laconic melody, the guitarist takes us through the spiritual balancing we must all go through.
9. ‘What is Life’
It may not be as instantly recognisable as ‘All Things Must Pass’ but Harrison’s ‘What Is Life’ was a popular hit when it arrived in 1971. It has since featured across a host of different film and TV projects always adding a lifting moment of human connection.
8. ‘I’d Have You Anytime’
The track was written alongside Bob Dylan as Harrison tried to find his own ‘voice’ on record. Harrison remembered in his autobiography: “He seemed very nervous and I felt a little uncomfortable—it seemed strange especially as he was in his own home. We got the guitars out and then things loosened up.”
7. ‘Within You Without You’
Often thought of as ‘Paul McCartney’s record’, Sgt. Pepper wasn’t a pleasant experience for George Harrison. “Sgt Pepper was the one album where things were done slightly differently,” he said in Anthology. “A lot of the time…we weren’t allowed to play as a band so much. It became an assembly process — just little parts and then overdubbing.”
6. ‘My Sweet Lord’
One of Harrison’s most iconic solo efforts the track is a perfect summation of All Things Must Pass LP and the path he intended to carve out for his solo career. Another moment of higher-thinking meeting pop music, this song could have easily been missed by the general public.
The opening track of the 1966 effort Revolver is an indicative one. It highlighted that George Harrison had firmly thrown his hat in the ring as yet another seasoned songwriter for the band to choose from. It also saw Harrison again draw from personal experiences.
4. ‘Here Comes The Sun’
Arguably the most famous of George Harrison’s compositions, ‘Here Comes The Sun’ is one of the most beautiful songs The Beatles ever produced. Recorded as part of Abbey Road, the song is a transcendent moment for anyone who hears those first iconic notes.
When artists such as Frank Sinatra pick out your work and label it as “the greatest love song of the past 50 years,” you know you’re doing something right. ‘Something’ will forever remain a special track for George Harrison. Not only was it the first song he was able to releases with The Beatles as a fully-fledged single, but it was also the first song for The Beatles to reach number one that wasn’t suffixed with “written by Lennon-McCartney.”
2. ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’
George Harrison’s greatest song with The Beatles quite simply has to be the masterpiece ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’. It was recorded in 1968 as part of the White Album sessions and was written as an exercise in ‘randomness’ where he consulted the Chinese Book of Changes. “The Eastern concept is that whatever happens is all meant to be,” Harrison once commented. “Every little item that’s going down has a purpose. ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ was a simple study based on that theory… I picked up a book at random, opened it, saw ‘gently weeps’, then laid the book down again and started the song.”
1. ‘All Things Must Pass’
If you survey the internet landscape for the George Harrison ‘Best Of’ articles you will be unlikely to find this little transcendental number on any of their lists. Why? We’re not sure. But are we going to mull it over for years and lose our cool over it? No. Thanks to one of the greatest songs ever written, George Harrison’s ‘All Things Must Pass’.
Originally recorded by Harrison as a demo for The Beatles on his 26th birthday, the song remains one of the few moments where western pop meets eastern ideology. Scrapped by The Beatles, the material eventually appeared on the album of the same name.
Its lyrics are based on a translation of part of chapter 23 of the Tao Te Ching, and the track acts as a moment of songwriting bliss. Harrison explains the most complex of theories with a simple, soaring and heartfelt moment of connection and advice. It’s the poetry of his creation that shines through everything he does.
Who is George Harrison ?
George Harrison MBE was an English musician, singer-songwriter, and music and film producer who achieved international fame as the lead guitarist of the Beatles.
(25 February 1943 – 29 November 2001)
the quiet Beatle
Sometimes called “the quiet Beatle“, Harrison embraced Indian culture and helped broaden the scope of popular music through his incorporation of Indian instrumentation and Hindu-aligned spirituality in the Beatles’ work.
Although the majority of the band’s songs were written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, most Beatles albums from 1965 onwards contained at least two Harrison compositions. His songs for the group include “Taxman”, “Within You Without You”, “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, “Here Comes the Sun” and “Something”.
What was George Harrison’s last words?
George Harrison’s last words to his wife helped her grieve
“But George was right, I am fine and I am okay, although I will miss him until my dying day,” Olivia continued to the Telegraph. During a 2005 interview with the Independent, Olivia said that George knew how to light up the room.
Did George Harrison died at paul McCartney’s house?
Harrison did not die at McCartney home. Sir Paul McCartney has denied reports his former Beatles bandmate George Harrison died at a house he owned in California. A Los Angeles television station claimed Sir Paul had given his friend the use of his secluded home in the final days of his life.
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