107 Facts About George Harrison


George Harrison was an English musician and singer-songwriter who achieved international fame as the lead guitarist of the Beatles.


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.


George Harrison organised the 1971 Concert for Bangladesh with Indian musician Ravi Shankar, a precursor to later benefit concerts such as Live Aid.


George Harrison co-founded HandMade Films in 1978, initially to produce the Monty Python troupe's comedy film The Life of Brian.


George Harrison released several best-selling singles and albums as a solo performer.


George Harrison's remains were cremated, and the ashes were scattered according to Hindu tradition in a private ceremony in the Ganges and Yamuna rivers in India.


George Harrison was born at 12 Arnold Grove in Wavertree, Liverpool, on 25 February 1943.


George Harrison was the youngest of four children of Harold Hargreaves Harrison and Louise.


George Harrison had one sister, Louise, and two brothers, Harold was born on 1934 and and Peter.


In 1948, at the age of five, George Harrison enrolled at Dovedale Primary School.


George Harrison passed the eleven-plus exam and attended Liverpool Institute High School for Boys from 1954 to 1959.


At first, Harold George Harrison was apprehensive about his son's interest in pursuing a music career.


In March 1958, at McCartney's urging, George Harrison auditioned for the Quarrymen at Rory Storm's Morgue Skiffle Club, playing Arthur "Guitar Boogie" Smith's "Guitar Boogie Shuffle", but Lennon felt that George Harrison, having just turned 15, was too young to join the band.


McCartney arranged a second meeting, on the upper deck of a Liverpool bus, during which George Harrison impressed Lennon by performing the lead guitar part for the instrumental "Raunchy".


George Harrison began socialising with the group, filling in on guitar as needed, and then became accepted as a member.


That moniker arose when the Beatles arrived in the United States in early 1964, and George Harrison was ill with a case of Strep throat and a fever and was medically advised to limit speaking as much as possible until he performed on The Ed Sullivan Show as scheduled.


George Harrison served as the Beatles' scout for new American releases, being especially knowledgeable about soul music.


George Harrison later called Rubber Soul his "favourite [Beatles] album".


Author Nicholas Schaffner wrote in 1978 that following George Harrison's increased association with the sitar after "Norwegian Wood", he became known as "the maharaja of raga-rock".


George Harrison continued to develop his interest in non-Western instrumentation, playing swarmandal on "Strawberry Fields Forever".


George Harrison played sitar and tambura on the track, backed by musicians from the London Asian Music Circle on dilruba, swarmandal and tabla.


George Harrison returned 12 days later, after his bandmates had agreed to move the film project to their own Apple Studio and to abandon McCartney's plan for making a return to public performance.


George Harrison's increased productivity meant that by the time of their break-up he had amassed a stockpile of unreleased compositions.


George Harrison's last recording session with the Beatles was on 4 January 1970, when he, McCartney and Starr recorded his song "I Me Mine" for the Let It Be soundtrack album.


For many years, George Harrison was restricted in his songwriting contributions to the Beatles' albums, but he released All Things Must Pass, a triple album with two discs of his songs and the third of recordings of George Harrison jamming with friends.


In 2000, Apple Records released a thirtieth-anniversary edition of the album, and George Harrison actively participated in its promotion.


George Harrison responded to a request from Ravi Shankar by organising a charity event, the Concert for Bangladesh, which took place on 1 August 1971.


In November 1974, George Harrison became the first ex-Beatle to tour North America when he began his 45-date Dark Horse Tour.


George Harrison considered it the least satisfactory of the three albums he had recorded since All Things Must Pass.


George Harrison released two singles from the LP: "You", which reached the Billboard top 20, and "This Guitar ", Apple's final original single release.


In 1979, Harrison released George Harrison, which followed his second marriage and the birth of his son Dhani.


The murder of John Lennon on 8 December 1980 disturbed George Harrison and reinforced his decades-long concern about stalkers.


George Harrison did not release any new albums for five years after 1982's Gone Troppo received little notice from critics or the public.


In November 1987, George Harrison released the platinum album Cloud Nine.


In 1988, George Harrison formed the Traveling Wilburys with Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan and Tom Petty.


The album included three new songs, including "Cheer Down", which George Harrison had recently contributed to the Lethal Weapon 2 film soundtrack.


In December 1991, George Harrison joined Clapton for a tour of Japan.


On 6 April 1992, George Harrison held a benefit concert for the Natural Law Party at the Royal Albert Hall, his first London performance since the Beatles' 1969 rooftop concert.


In 1994, George Harrison began a collaboration with McCartney, Starr and producer Jeff Lynne for the Beatles Anthology project.


George Harrison refused to participate in the completion of a third song.


George Harrison's final television appearance was a VH-1 special to promote the album, taped in May 1997.


George Harrison publicly blamed years of smoking for the illness.


In January 1998, George Harrison attended Carl Perkins' funeral in Jackson, Tennessee, where he performed a brief rendition of Perkins' song "Your True Love".


In May 2001, it was revealed that George Harrison had undergone an operation to remove a cancerous growth from one of his lungs, and in July, it was reported that he was being treated for a brain tumour at a clinic in Switzerland.


On 29 November 2001, George Harrison died at a property belonging to McCartney, on Heather Road in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles.


George Harrison died in the company of Olivia, Dhani, Shankar and the latter's wife Sukanya and daughter Anoushka, and Hare Krishna devotees Shyamasundar Das and Mukunda Goswami, who chanted verses from the Bhagavad Gita.


In 1961, the Beatles recorded "Cry for a Shadow", a blues-inspired instrumental co-written by Lennon and George Harrison, who is credited with composing the song's lead guitar part, building on unusual chord voicings and imitating the style of other English groups such as the Shadows.


In 1965, George Harrison used an expression pedal to control his guitar's volume on "I Need You", creating a syncopated flautando effect with the melody resolving its dissonance through tonal displacements.


George Harrison used the same volume-swell technique on "Yes It Is", applying what Everett described as "ghostly articulation" to the song's natural harmonics.


George Harrison played backwards guitar on Lennon's composition "I'm Only Sleeping" and a guitar counter-melody on "And Your Bird Can Sing" that moved in parallel octaves above McCartney's bass downbeats.


George Harrison's guitar playing on "I Want to Tell You" exemplified the pairing of altered chordal colours with descending chromatic lines and his guitar part for Sgt Peppers "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" mirrors Lennon's vocal line in much the same way that a sarangi player accompanies a khyal singer in a Hindu devotional song.


George Harrison's playing on Abbey Road, and in particular on "Something", marked a significant moment in his development as a guitarist.


Lavezzoli described George Harrison's slide playing on the Grammy-winning instrumental "Marwa Blues" as demonstrating Hawaiian influences while comparing the melody to an Indian sarod or veena, calling it "yet another demonstration of George Harrison's unique slide approach".


George Harrison performed at a Formby convention in 1991, and served as the honorary president of the George Formby Appreciation Society.


In June 1966, George Harrison met Shankar at the home of Mrs Angadi of the Asian Music Circle, asked to be his student, and was accepted.


George Harrison initially stayed in Bombay until fans learned of his arrival, then moved to a houseboat on a remote lake in Kashmir.


George Harrison studied the instrument until 1968, when, following a discussion with Shankar about the need to find his "roots", an encounter with Clapton and Jimi Hendrix at a hotel in New York convinced him to return to guitar playing.


George Harrison wrote his first song, "Don't Bother Me", while sick in a hotel bed in Bournemouth during August 1963, as "an exercise to see if I could write a song", as he remembered.


George Harrison often had difficulty getting the band to record his songs.


George Harrison wrote the chord progression of "Don't Bother Me" almost exclusively in the Dorian mode, demonstrating an interest in exotic tones that eventually culminated in his embrace of Indian music.


From 1968 onwards, George Harrison collaborated with other musicians; he brought in Eric Clapton to play lead guitar on "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" for the 1968 Beatles' White Album, and collaborated with John Barham on his 1968 debut solo album, Wonderwall Music, which included contributions from Clapton again, as well as Peter Tork from the Monkees.


George Harrison played on tracks by Dave Mason, Nicky Hopkins, Alvin Lee, Ronnie Wood, Billy Preston and Tom Scott.


George Harrison co-wrote songs and music with Dylan, Clapton, Preston, Doris Troy, David Bromberg, Gary Wright, Wood, Jeff Lynne and Tom Petty, among others.


George Harrison co-wrote the song "Badge" with Clapton, which was included on Cream's 1969 album, Goodbye.


George Harrison played rhythm guitar on the track, using the pseudonym "L'Angelo Misterioso" for contractual reasons.


In 1974, George Harrison founded Dark Horse Records as an avenue for collaboration with other musicians.


George Harrison wanted Dark Horse to serve as a creative outlet for artists, as Apple Records had for the Beatles.


George Harrison produced and made multiple musical contributions to Splinter's debut album, The Place I Love, which provided Dark Horse with its first hit, "Costafine Town".


George Harrison collaborated with Tom Scott on Scott's 1975 album New York Connection, and in 1981 he played guitar on "Walk a Thin Line", from Mick Fleetwood's The Visitor.


When George Harrison joined the Quarrymen in 1958, his main guitar was a Hofner President Acoustic, which he soon traded for a Hofner Club 40 model.


George Harrison bought a Gretsch Tennessean and a Gretsch Country Gentleman, which he played on "She Loves You", and during the Beatles' 1964 appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.


George Harrison used a Gibson J-160E and a Gibson SG Standard while recording the album.


George Harrison later painted his Stratocaster in a psychedelic design that included the word "Bebopalula" above the pickguard and the guitar's nickname, "Rocky", on the headstock.


George Harrison played this guitar in the Magical Mystery Tour film and throughout his solo career.


George Harrison helped finance Ravi Shankar's documentary Raga and released it through Apple Films in 1971.


George Harrison produced, with Apple manager Allen Klein, the Concert for Bangladesh film.


George Harrison financed the production of Life of Brian in part by mortgaging his home, which Idle later called "the most anybody's ever paid for a cinema ticket in history".


George Harrison served as executive producer for 23 films with HandMade, including A Private Function, Mona Lisa, Shanghai Surprise, Withnail and I and How to Get Ahead in Advertising.


George Harrison made cameo appearances in several of these films, including a role as a nightclub singer in Shanghai Surprise, for which he recorded five new songs.


George Harrison ceased operations in 1991 and was sold three years later to Paragon Entertainment, a Canadian corporation.


George Harrison was involved in humanitarian and political activism throughout his life.


George Harrison pushed Apple to release Shankar's Joi Bangla EP in an effort to raise further awareness for the cause.


George Harrison responded by organising the Concert for Bangladesh, which raised more than $240,000.


From 1980, George Harrison became a vocal supporter of Greenpeace and CND.


George Harrison protested against the use of nuclear energy with Friends of the Earth, and helped finance Vole, a green magazine launched by Monty Python member Terry Jones.


George Harrison recorded a benefit single, "Nobody's Child", with the Traveling Wilburys, and assembled a fundraising album with contributions from other artists including Clapton, Starr, Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Donovan and Van Morrison.


However, George Harrison stopped using LSD after a disenchanting experience in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury neighborhood.


In line with the Hindu yoga tradition, George Harrison became a vegetarian in the late 1960s.


George Harrison embraced the Hare Krishna tradition, particularly japa-yoga chanting with beads, and became a lifelong devotee.


George Harrison married model Pattie Boyd on 21 January 1966, with McCartney serving as best man.


Together they had one son, Dhani George Harrison, born on 1 August 1978.


George Harrison restored the English manor house and grounds of Friar Park, his home in Henley-on-Thames, where several of his music videos, including "Crackerbox Palace", were filmed; the grounds served as the background for the cover of All Things Must Pass.


George Harrison employed ten workers to maintain the 36-acre garden.


The former Beatles publicist Derek Taylor helped George Harrison write the book, which said little about the Beatles, focusing instead on George Harrison's hobbies, music and lyrics.


George Harrison had an interest in sports cars and motor racing; he was one of the 100 people who purchased the McLaren F1 road car.


George Harrison had collected photos of racing drivers and their cars since he was young; at 12, he had attended his first race, the 1955 British Grand Prix at Aintree.


George Harrison wrote "Faster" as a tribute to the Formula One racing drivers Jackie Stewart and Ronnie Peterson.


McCartney said that he and George Harrison usually shared a bedroom while touring.


Rodriguez commented: "Even to the end of George Harrison's days, theirs was a volatile relationship".


The minor planet 4149 George Harrison, discovered in 1984, was named after him, as was a variety of Dahlia flower.


George Harrison is in number 65 in the list of "100 greatest songwriters of all time" by the same magazine.


In 2002, on the first anniversary of his death, the Concert for George Harrison was held at the Royal Albert Hall.


In 2004, George Harrison was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist by his former bandmates Lynne and Petty, and into the Madison Square Garden Walk of Fame in 2006 for the Concert for Bangladesh.


George Harrison was posthumously honoured with The Recording Academy's Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammy Awards in February 2015.


An Illinois State Historical Society marker in Benton, Illinois commemorates George Harrison's visit in the town in 1963 to see his sister, making him the first Beatle to visit the United States.


In 2017, a mural instillation was unveiled in the town of George Harrison painted by artist John Cerney.


Statues of George Harrison can be found around the world, including several across his native Liverpool and a bust in the Shadhinotar Shagram Triangle Sculpture Garden in Dhaka, Bangladesh commemorating George Harrison's contributions to Bangladeshi culture.