15: George and John

February 25, 2015

Podcast, Podcasting


In this episode, Robert and Richard discuss the personal and creative dynamic between these two Beatles, both during and after their bandmate years.

Songs include: €œ”She Said She Said,”€ “Oh My Love” and “Not Guilty.”

GH JL SATB final

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    14 Responses to “15: George and John”

    1. King Kevin Says:

      This is your best podcast yet! When John made his statement about only having chosen 2 people to work with- Paul and Yoko, he admitted that those are the only he would ever share the spotlight with. I don’t think he could stand being 2nd fiddle for more than a song or two. Paul, too. Those guys love being the singer and center of attention. George lost out because of it, but so did they, ultimately. It’s sad. Thanks for the great discussion!


    2. Paul Tidey Says:

      One of your best guys – I think I know my stuff, but especially Robert, your knowledge, insight, narrative & input are incredible.


    3. Robert Rodriquez Says:

      Hey guys – I’m not sure if I’m missing episodes or if you guys are just incredibly busy. The last episode I see on the site and in my podcast, is the Dutch imports. Am I caught up? I think I’ve listened to all your episodes a few times now. So I guess what I’m saying is that I’m jonesing for a new one. I know these must take a ton of time, but you guys are the best, and we all appreciate what you do.
      Ps – any word on rhiana’s shirt at the final four performance. It seemed as if she made to cover it up with that coat she was wearing. I was wondering if there may have been a licensing issue or something. Can an artist just wear a Beatle shirt on stage or is prior permission required?

      Pps – yes my last name is spelled with Q not a G.


      • Us Says:

        Hi Robert w/a ‘q’!

        Yes, you are correct – that is all so far. BUT – we have three more in varying states of completion that are being worked on. One – on Brian Epstein – will be posted very soon, with the other two to follow.

        Yes, we can get busy at times, but the main issue has been accessing studio time. We typically take 3-4 sessions to complete each show: 1 for taping, and the other 2 to 3 for editing. We could crank them out faster but would prefer not to sacrifice the quality.

        On the whole, we are aiming for a new show at least every 3-4 weeks. That’s the goal, anyway!

        Thanks for writing, Robert w/a ‘Q’!


    4. Jim King Says:

      I can’t tell you guys how much I love these conversations. Its like sitting around with friends talking about the Beatles. Its just a great time and one that goes by too fast. Thanks.


    5. Mike Ballif Says:

      Nice work. You two are both very talented.

      Very enjoyable.

      Thank you.


    6. The Applesauce Project Says:

      Thank you for pointing out Geoff Emerick’s anti-George and pro-Paul bias.


    7. Josée Larose Says:

      Hello. About the famous list of questions that a fan sent John in ’76. I interpreted John’s answer for “George”, “lost”, as “George is lost to me. I have lost George.” I was unfamiliar with many of the anecdotes that you relayed on your show but I knew that John had repeatedly wronged George. So for John it may have been a magic opportunity to let out that he knew his actions had lead to the loss of his beloved friend.

      As for the answer for Paul, I certainly do not believe it was sarcastic. In Many Years From Now (B.Miles), it is written that Yoko flies to London to meet Paul and asks him to speak to John. Yoko tells Paul what she expects John to do to win her back. Paul flies to L.A. and relates Yoko’s message to John. At that moment John may have been struck dumb and highly suspicious of Paul. He may have thought “And what’s in it for you?”

      So when I read that John’s answer for the word “Paul” was “Extraordinary”, on the spot I felt happy and relieved and amply satisfied with his response. Then, like you, I thought “Hmm.. but wait, is his answer sarcastic?” Then, when the L.A. story came back to my mind again I concluded a strong No. I never again doubted that John’s answer about Paul was nothing but true admiration for his friend.

      John Lennon, with all his Peace Movement thing and all, may have never witnessed or at least, absorbed, an act of pure love. Until that day with what Paul did for him.

      Even years after this event John was quoted to say “I never understood why Paul did that.”


    8. Jeff Says:

      Great work you guys. I’m catching up with these slowly!! Hopefully I’ll be in sync soon.

      Brief comment about Paul being bossy, the ego, etc : anyone who’s ever been in a band (or even just a jam-type situation) will recognise that at some point, *somebody* has to take charge, or nothing will ever get done. The others may have resented him taking on that mantle, but really, I’m not sure *anything* would have got done without him.

      Keep up the good work!


    9. Grete Ringgaard Says:

      Being a lifelong fan of George it’s so nice to hear your praise Georges (and Ringos)work in the group. To me he was always the sound of Beatles. So sad they didn’t get more years to perform. Love your shows guys.


    10. Maurice Dorreboom Says:

      Hey guys, great fan of your podcasts!

      I wondered when John really didn’t bother to show up for a George Harrison session anymore. It turns out it isn’t as often as we did thought. Below you will find a list of George’s songs and what John’s input was on the finished recording. If you forget “Within You, Without You”, because no other Beatle had any input, I discovered that on only 5 songs out of 22 songs John didn’t do anything at all.

      1963-09 – Don’t Bother Me (remake) – Rhythm Guitar, Tambourine
      1965-02 – I Need You – Backing Vocal, Acoustic Rhythm guitar
      1965-02 – You Like Me Too Much – Electric piano, Acoustic Rhythm guitar
      1965-10 – If I Needed Someone – Backing Vocals
      1966-04/06 – Taxman – Backing Vocal, Tambourine
      1966-08 – I Love You To – No Input
      1966-08 – I Want To Tell You – Backing Vocal, Tambourine, Hand claps
      1967-02 – Only A Northern Song – Piano, Glockenspiel
      1967-03 – Within You Without You – No Input
      1967-05 – It’s All Too Much – Lead Guitar, Backing Vocal, Hand claps
      1967-11 – Blue Jay Way – Backing Vocals
      1968-01/02 – The Inner Light – Backing Vocals
      1968-08 – Not Guilty – Harpsichord
      1968-09 – While My Guitar Gently Weeps – Electric Guitar
      1968-09/10 – Piggies – Tape Effects, Backing Vocals
      1968-10 – Long, Long, Long – No Input
      1968-10 – Savoy Truffle – No Input
      1969-01 – For You Blue – Lap Steal Guitar
      1969-04 – Old Brown Shoe – Backing Vocals
      1969-05/06 – Something – Piano
      1969-07/08 – Here Comes The Sun – No Input
      1970-01/04 – I Me Mine – No Input

      Musical Greetings from the Netherlands


      • Us Says:

        Hi Maurice,

        Greetings from Chicago and thanks for the input!

        To your list, I would add a couple of amendments: there’s no evidence of John playing harpsichord on “Not Guilty” – that’s generally believed to be assistant producer Chris Thomas, who performed the same duties on George’s “Piggies.” As for electric guitar on “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” no again – it’s believed that John may have played some on earlier takes, but the all revealing Rock Band stems show no non-Clapton electric guitar parts, by John or anyone else.

        So what we’re really looking at is the ten Harrisongs recorded from the White Album on, coinciding with the advent of Yoko and heroin. Of those, I make the case for some input on only four, and all but “For You Blue” is negligible: effects on “Piggies” – possible backing vocals on “Old Brown Shoe” – piano mixed low on “Something.” One can give John a pass on “Here Comes The Sun” as being tracked during his period of recovery after his car accident; fair enough. “I Me Mine” was after his purported “divorce,” though I tend to think his non-involvement there was more due to his being in Denmark.

        But the pattern is clear cut RE John’s disinterest in George’s material. The Let It Be sessions provide ample documentation of his open derision of George’s songs, and that’s just sessions we have access to. There’s plenty of reason to think that George expected he’d earned John’s support even into the solo years, but wised up after the 1973 “I’m The Greatest” sessions that collaborating would always be a one-way street with John, as far as George was concerned.


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