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An essential guide to George Harrison’s fascinating immediate post-Beatles career.
Depending on who you asked, George Harrison was many different things to different people. There was his songcraft, which won over the affections of producer savant Phil Spector; there was his musicianship, that captured the hearts of blues geniuses Eric Clapton and Delaney Bramlett; and then there was his penchant for comedy, which made him an obvious shoo-in for Rutland Weekend Television and Saturday Night Live.
But behind these traits stood a fragile man, aching for enlightenment and peace in an industry that strove to rid him of any of it. Keenly aware of this conflict, Harrison was brave enough to commit it to tape on the wistful Dark Horse, a confessional album written against the backdrop of a regrettable American tour. But Harrison was always ready to brave the conflict, and it served him better to ride it out than to return to The Beatles for an easy paycheque. He was known as 'The Quiet Beatle', although this title did him a disservice, considering his intellectual focus and thoughtful nature. Instead, he was arguably 'The Chameleonic Beatle', a moniker that only serves to understand this deeply complex guitar player better. And in a deeply complicated decade, Harrison's artistry flourished.
Eoghan Lyng is the author of U2 on track. Like U2 themselves, Lyng harbours a tremendous love for The Beatles and has long aspired to write a book about the Fab Four. For him, the band peaked with Revolver, but he finds their solo work that bit more interesting to explore. And when the solo material includes Living In The Material World and Extra Texture (Read All About It), can you blame him? Much like the guitarist he's written about, Lyng doesn't consider Life of Brian blasphemous but rates The Long Good Friday higher than Harrison. He lives in Dublin, Ireland.