Written for the Cloud Empire Creative Blog
An ode to George.
Don’t get me wrong, I know – he’s not one half of the greatest songwriting duo alive. He only averaged one song an album. He was underrated, overlooked even… hell, Ringo got more attention for having such lower musicianship in comparison to his counterparts.
But George changed the world. He made it. Wanna know how?
As the legend goes, both Paul & John were naturally talented. Paul grew up in a musical household, John’s mother taught him banjo as they grew closer in his teenage years. But it was George who sat up every night playing until his fingers bled. I kid you not! His mom would bandage them for him before school. George wanted it. And he was willing to leave everything – blood, sweat and tears – on his strings each night before going to sleep. You can’t buy (me love) or that kind of passion.
We come to the early days. Paul & John are songwriting gods that walk among common men. But it’s George that adds the little guitar lick. It’s George that chimes in with that third, slightly-harder-to-find harmony that make good songs great. He’s the one that makes the memorable; he polishes the work. Never underestimate how being a team player can change things.
Then, the later days. The disconnected Beatles. Yoko’s around and Paul’s rerecording Ringo’s takes while he’s not there. George (who’s finally getting more than one song an album) has a killer tune that no one will take seriously. So he brings in Clapton to guest on While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Suddenly, everyone’s on their best behaviour. Just shows how you don’t always have to yell & scream to demand respect.
And finally, George the conqueror. All Things Must Pass was the best selling solo record from a Beatle following the break up. While John was sleeping for peace and Paul was trying to be a lawyer, George concentrated on what mattered most: the music. The entire triple album is a testament to the man who stood overshadowed, the “quiet” Beatle…
So work hard. Be passionate. Take a good song & make it better. Demand respect when it needs to be demanded. And shine – my god, shine like there’s no tomorrow when it’s your time.
And you can grow up to be George Harrison too.
…. Katey Gatta