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George Harrison -The Greatest Beatle

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Showing 1-25 of 126 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 8, 2013 6:48:09 AM PST
Hip O Critic says:
My older brother made a comment recently and said "upon reflection he now thinks George Harrison was the greatest Beatle". I asked why and he said George's Beatle songs and solo work now seems vastly superior to the other Beatles solo and Beatle's songs. I agree and think George's songwriting was a bit too far out of the box for even George Martin to notice. I also think Lennon and McCartney were well aware of this and did everything in there power to stifle George for the benefit of their own egos. The world in my opinion is still learning how good George was as a songwriter and guitarist. He was about quality not quantity IMO. What do you think?

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 7:02:29 AM PST
Chazzzbo says:
Yes and no. I also appreciate George's Beatle and solo work more than the others, though the others' work is far from awful, for sure. I've often found George's lyrics to be deeper, and his music writing more complex and challenging. I don't believe, however, that L&M purposely tried to "stifle" his output. If anything, I believe it took George until the latter part of the band's timeline to feel really confident with his efforts. I also feel that his humility toward publicity and "stardom" created more of a mysterious persona. Though his body of work is very small, in comparison to someone like McCartney's, it's a rich, flavorful bounty of great work that continues to reveal new dimensions with each listen.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 7:16:10 AM PST
I've always enjoyed George's music, solo and in the group, also with the Traveling Wilbury's but superior to Paul and John? No. I don't really find any of them superior, just different enough to make the Beatles music that much better than it would be without any one of them.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 7:36:29 AM PST
Greatest Beatle was john he started the band

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 7:37:53 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 8, 2013 7:40:03 AM PST
Without the rest of the boys, John's band would have never gotten out of Liverpool. John was adventurous and witty and had a great stage presence, but no business sense.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 7:42:46 AM PST
none of were businessmen,atleast during Beatlemania<I love all 4 of them,I was the perfect age for Beatlemania,a freshmen in HS

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 7:49:25 AM PST
I was a kid, probably would have been too young to notice them for myself in 1964, but fortunately I had two older sisters that picked up on the phenomenon from the beginning.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 8:20:11 AM PST
vivazappa says:
George fans are always saying George is the greatest Beatle...more power to ya!

I like Paul...

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 9:39:17 AM PST
George Harrison had the most to gain after the split as he had accumulated a lot of songs that he could not get on Beatles albums. His writing had really blossomed but when you have Lennon and McCartney there's not too much room for another writer. So he seemed fated for that of a 3rd writer. A great 3rd writer at that. In most other bands he may have been a great 2nd writer or even a good 1st writer. But after All Things Must Pass it seemed as though his output was as hit and miss as John, Paul and Ringo. Still, one can make a good argument for choosing George as the best Beatle. They all brought some different elements to the table. And George certainly ha his share of creativity with and without the others. Personally I still like John Lennon the best. But I think George has gained even more respect as time has gone on. As well he should.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 9:43:59 AM PST
Totally agree with you Stoner....(in more ways than one!), really....I mean that George was equally as awesome as John and Paul and I don't believe they would have had the overwhelming success without EACH integral part, including Ringo, Brian Epstein and George Martin. George has some particularly great songs, though, doesn't he?, such as Something, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Within You Without You, and Here Comes the Sun which shall remain classics for all time!!!

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 11:23:33 AM PST
D. Mok says:
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Posted on Mar 8, 2013 12:06:28 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 8, 2013 12:09:28 PM PST
Lauren says:
George is my favorite Beatle by a good measure, but I couldn't really say he was the best. It took him a while (until Revolver?) to mature and find his voice as a songwriter, and even when he did his output wasn't nearly as diverse as what John and Paul produced. Given how high the bar appeared to be for getting George songs on a Beatles album, it's hard to say how much of his writing was of that quality.

I do think that George has it all over John and Paul when it comes to solo work. All were maddeningly inconsistent, but George had the best run of all, from All Things Must Pass through his self titled album. (Yes, I think even Dark Horse and Extra Texture work.) His solo efforts had to be approached on their own terms, to be sure, but he never descended into esoterica (as John did) or fluff (as Paul did).

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 12:45:53 PM PST
Dr. Mikey says:
Lauren, I can't say who is my "favorite" Beatle - I've loved Paul for many years, being a first gen fan (i.e., old guy) - but lately I have been getting back into George's solo catalog. I think it is fabulous, and I agree with you that even his "worst stuff" is generally good. There are a few misses, but his soul/funk stuff on the minor albums is great. His use of instruments and unusal chord progressions are also innovative. I agree that John became too esoteric and produced songs that worked better as therapy for him than music for me for a bit, and that Paul tends to get too cute at times. If there is a knock on George it is that he can be too preachy. I understand that even though I'm a Krishna fan, though not a devout Hindu.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 1:22:29 PM PST
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Posted on Mar 8, 2013 1:37:47 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 8, 2013 1:37:58 PM PST
Johnny Bee says:
I always liked that Pete Best.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 2:01:53 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 8, 2013 2:05:39 PM PST
I was in the 8th grade when the Beatles came to America, and I loved them all and still do. Over the years I have had different favorites at different times in my life. In the beginning my favorite was Ringo. If you were around back then, you probably remember that Ringo was the most popular Beatle in America (remember all the "I Love Ringo" buttons?) during those early moptop days. His performance in A Hard Day's Night solidified his popularity.

By the time I started college and as a young adult, John was my favorite. At some point, maybe about 15 years ago, Paul became my favorite. I like George but I don't think he has ever been my favorite.

I think much too much is made out of the fact that George couldn't get many songs on the Beatles albums. Do you remember John's responses to questions about this on the Beatles Anthology documentary? He was quite brutal. He said that George was brought into the band to be a guitarist, not a songwriter. He and Paul were the songwriters and leads, and George was just "NOT in the same league." He conceded that George eventually improved and wrote some good songs like Here Comes the Sun and Something and said that wasn't surprising since he had all those years to work around and observe two of the best effing songwriters in the world (his words!).

When asked why he never collaborated with George after the Beatles broke up and he was no longer partners with Paul, he basically said that George wasn't good enough.

When asked if there would ever be a reunion of the Beatles, he said the only way that would happen would be if he and Paul wanted to do it since they were the ones who created the music and that whether or not the other two would show up was not important.

I don't remember the exact time frame these comments were made, but I know that John was quite angry when George wouldn't allow Yoko to sing at the concert for Bangladesh and, reportedly, their relationship was never the same after that. And, we certainly know that John isn't above making nasty comments about someone when he is carrying a grudge.

It's my opinion, that George's early songs were not very good. In fact, they stand out like a sore thumb on some of the albums. His vocal abilities were not as good as Lennon and McCartney's either. He just didn't sing with the same emotion that they did. I think they were quite indulgent to allow any of his early songs on the albums at all. He did get better. I think his first decent song was on Rubber Soul -- Think For Yourself.

Songwriting did not come naturally to George (by his own admission), but there began to be tremendous pressure to prove your artistic worth by writing your own songs. Also, Lennon and McCartney's songwriting was earning them quite a bit more money than the other two were earning.

A case in point is the song Something. He lifted the first line (arguably the best line in the song) from James Taylor's song "Something in the Way She Moves." George said that it took him 3 months to come up with a second line. This is not a natural born lyricist.

I have read that when George brought the sitar into the studio, he began to command respect. I think it was only after his time spent in India studying with Ravi and studying Eastern religion that he began to have something to say. That is when he improved as a songwriter.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 2:41:55 PM PST
D. Mok says:
> When asked why he never collaborated with George after the Beatles broke up and he was no longer partners with Paul, he basically said
> that George wasn't good enough.

And somehow, in John Lennon's deluded, drug-addled, poisonous, anti-Semitic, homophobic, hen-pecked mind, the rhythmless, tone-deaf Yoko Ono was "good enough". Apparently, Lennon judged a person's musical talent by her willingness to let Lennon have sex with her. God, what a tool. I take back the earlier statement -- it's grossly unfair to Ringo Starr to be put onto the same pile as the grotesquely untalented John Lennon.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 2:50:01 PM PST
Chazzzbo says:
Lennon's continual bitterness and cynicism may have made him a hero to some. I just found him boorish and repetitive. Sad that his life was cut short, but I can't say I really miss his work.

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 2:55:01 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 8, 2013 3:17:24 PM PST
D. Mok says:
> Lennon's continual bitterness and cynicism may have made him a hero to some. I just found him boorish and repetitive.

That's being way too nice. John Lennon was hateful, narcissistic and brutish. What manner of monster does it take to tell his own laughing son, "I hate the way you ****ing laugh; never let me hear your ****ing horrible laugh again"? Celebrating John Lennon for being "honest" is like celebrating Adolf Hitler for being "honest" about the way he felt about Jews. A real "honest" man stands by his wife and son. John Lennon hid them away for the sake of his own selfish career, and abused his son emotionally for no reason.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 2:56:28 PM PST
I absolutely, 100% agree with your assessment, Hip O Critic. George was MASSIVELY underrated while in The Beatles. John Lennon had a few fantastic songs such as "Imagine", "Momma". Paul had "Band on the Run" and "Live and Let Die". Ringo had... Well....

But George had his double-LP All Things Must Pass in which, in my opinion, every song is a masterpiece. Living in the Material World was another awesome album, as was Brainwashed. He also founded Handmade Films (which produced a number of Python-related films like Life of Brian and Time Bandits.) Yes, he was amazing. He was also a fellow Pisces (so I may be a tiny bit biased).

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 8:17:19 PM PST
D Mok,
Comparing John Lennon to Hitler. WoW!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 9:20:53 PM PST
Lauren says:
Does a Hitler analogy still mean you immediately lose an online argument by way of Godwin's Law?

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 9:31:29 PM PST
I don't know what Godwin's Law is, but when you compare the man who wrote "A Day In The Life", "Imagine', "I Am The Walrus", and "In My Life" among many other great songs to the man responsible for starting World War two, and killing millions of people, you kind of lose your credibility with me.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 9:32:30 PM PST
@Kevin Snyder: "Ringo had... Well...."

Ringo had "Beaucoups Of Blues", "Coochy-Coo", "Early 1970", "It Don't Come Easy", "Back Off Boogaloo", "Photograph", "Oh My My", "I'm The Greatest", "You're Sixteen"...

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 8, 2013 9:36:38 PM PST
@John Connolly: Lennon bashers pop up periodically on these forums. These rather gullible folk read the trash bios and believe every word. Further, more grounded, research either completely disproves their claims or puts them within a proper context. Lennon was no saint (yes, he was violent when he was drunk on a few occasions), but the people who bash aren't really looking for the truth--they're looking for any way they can knock his legend down a peg or two, and troll for reactions from his followers.
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Discussion in:  Music forum
Participants:  41
Total posts:  126
Initial post:  Mar 8, 2013
Latest post:  Aug 9, 2016

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