Musical Obsession #1 for 2012: George Harrison
No, not a word of the day post this one. Not really related to classical guitar or classical music. Nor really showcasing George Harrison as such – smack hands if you are unaware of who he is! Seriously, there cannot be people out there who don’t know who this man is. One must be born knowing who George Harrison is. Anyway, I digress…
I just thought I’d share with you my latest musical obsession.
Sorry, better back track slighty.
I go through phases of intensely listening to one artist, be it from the classical guitar world (Julian Bream has often been an obsessional artist of mine), wider classical music world (Nigel Kennedy is a perennial favourite – first started that one about age nine so I’m sure he’ll feature here this year, and laterly Lang Lang), rock, pop, blues you name it. I also get reasonably obsessional about certain pieces of music — including classical pieces (and will invariably seek out various renditions of the same piece), rock or pop tunes (my flatmates from uni will recall me obsessively playing on repeat Moloko’s Sing It Back until I drove them quite mad) or whole albums on repeat for days (The Beatles Rubber Soul or White Album, Cee Lo Green The Lady Killer, Gotan Project La Revancha del Tango, Melbourne Guitar Quartet Toccata…). There’s something in my brain that drives me to do this endlessly. I know not why.
So anyway. Yes, George is the subject of my latest obsession. This is not somethng new; I’ve had manic periods of playing George Harrison tracks in the past. But I blame a very long plane journey and Martin Scorsese for the obsession this tine round. I watched Scorsese’s fantastic 3.5 hour documentary on George Harrison from Melboure to London. Sounds long for a doco, but the time few by watching the fantastically crafted doco – and reminded me of Harrison’s awesome, Phil Spector-produced All Things Must Pass album….Enter obsession. Then following that a replay of Harrison’s 1987 oeuvre Cloud Nine with Jeff Lynne’s oh-so-80s, slightly dated, Vaseline smeered production. Awesomeness.
And then picking up a copy of Mojo magazine with free CD on the front of Harrison tracks played by other artists. Ooh nice. A different take on the obsession.
And then of course, as a child of the 80s, a “mix tape” (or 2010s digital version thereof) of all of Harrison’s Beatle Songs for my aurl delectation.
So, as we type I’m listening to the awesome blues jams, out takes tacked onto the end of Disc Two of the 2001 30th anniversary reissue of All Things Must Pass. Bloody love it.
What an obsession. What a songwriter. What a musician. What a guitarist. Love you George. Well, at least until the next obsession invades my brain.
Share in my obsession with a bit of George on stage in his Concert for Bangadesh with Wah Wah:
Or how about a bit of Got My Mind Set On You:
Or this one:
Talk about 80s excess. This features George on stage with Eric Clapton, Ringo Starr, Ray Cooper (the man make tambourine banging a true art form), Elton John, Jeff Lynne and Phil Collins.
Come on then. One more. The Travelling Wilbury’s Handle With Care: