One of the first thing anyone asks after finding out that one is a Beatles fan (immediately following the
usual query, "Aren't you too young to love The Beatles?") is, "who's your favorite Beatle?".
As a Beatlemaniac, I obviously love all four Beatles - but like many, I do have a favorite. For me, it’s George,
and it has been since I first encountered The Beatles.
My eleven-year-old reasoning at the time was that I liked his humor,
I liked the way he sang “I’m Happy Just To Dance With You” in A Hard Day’s Night, I liked
the way he looked (as I would come to realize: georgeous ;)), and I liked the way he spoke.
Head over heels,
the adoration was soon accompanied by respect as I grew older and read increasingly about The Beatles, becoming more and more
intrigued by George.
So, here are the top seven reasons why George is my favorite Beatle, and my all-time favorite person.
His songwriting and composing
never ceases to amaze me that he wrote lyrics such as “Within You Without You” at the age of twenty-three…
and that his solo career (so often underrated and overlooked) is filled with gems that should be classics. What also grips
me is the fact that, in all his lyrics, there seems to be a bit of humor lurking around. His songwriting had such depth; even
his love songs were never really just straightforward, happy-go-lucky tunes.
Listen to things like the solo in “Something”
- the feel and emotion of it is stunning. Or the instrumental “Marwa Blues,” which is so beautiful, it can’t
be adequately described. Or his incredible slide guitar playing.
I could go on for ages, but for the sake of space will
wrap it up by saying that he was a fantastic, brilliant songwriter and composer who need not shy away from being compared
to the great Lennon/McCartney songwriting team. George remains just as good (and sometimes better).
What an astonishing musician he was
Not just that he reportedly placed 26 (!) instruments; I particularly
mean the way he was just such a great, understated guitarist! Just listen to all of his playing through the years.
I’ve found myself reading a quote by him that made me
really thoughtful, because it was so serious, only to then turn the page to find a quote that nearly made me fall out of my
chair with laughter. He had such a wonderfully dry and hilarious sense of humor… it made reading The Beatles Anthology all
the more enjoyable, because I was always waiting for another quote to make me laugh. (Okay, admittedly, I did first read all
of George’s quotes.) What I also respect is his - and the other three’s - ability to laugh at and about themselves.
They never took themselves all too seriously… something a lot of people could learn from.
His attitude toward people
What I mean is - think about who organized the first really
major benefit concert? It was George with the Concert for Bangladesh… and he was really looking to help people with
so many things he did. I’d venture to guess that he gave far more to charities and other good causes than are publicly
Also, he must have been an incredible friend who is sorely missed. Just watch “Living in the Material World”
to hear how much his friendship means to everyone.
Not enough to say it is brilliant. From the Beatle years through
his solo career, including The Traveling Wilburys, his music is timeless. This reason goes hand in hand with reason one, but
just to reiterate again: George’s music is incredible.
You read about, and see, how amazing he was, how grumpy, how
deep, how hilarious, how humble, his perseverance and spirituality, and so much more... and it all adds up to make George
completely unique, complex and, ultimately, irreplacable.
His intriguing personality
When I found this quote by Tony Barrow in The Best of The
Beatles Book, I thought it wrapped it up fittingly:
“Not only was George the Beatle who changed the most during
the lifespan of the group, he was the one who was seen very differenly by different people. To some he was serious, studious
and sometimes sulky. Others saw him as a pleasant, chummy and cheerful lad. Others would say he was far too deep for them.
In a way, everyone was right, and he was all of these things and more. George wasn’t a simple person to assess, even
once you got to know him, but the one characteristic that never changed was his fundamental sincerity. George genuinely believed
in what he said and did.”
* * *
- George and Paul's story of
hitch-hiking together as teens; read about it in the Anthology book.
grin... because I've found it irresisible since first seeing it.
- The way George
looked so deep in concentration when playing the guitar, yet made it look so effortless.
he was just so wonderfully silly.
- He (and the
other three!) never cease to be interesting to me... which is why I never grow tired of reading about them, hearing about
them, watching documentaries etc.
- Hey, The
Beatles invented MTV. ;p
- The stories
of the Hamburg days. Oh, to be able to time-travel...
- Each part
of the movie "Help!", with special reference being made to the "fiendish thingy!" scene and all the bits in the Bahamas.
- What Klaus
Voormann calls "Georgie-German". See Klaus' book "Warum spielst du Imagine nicht auf dem weissen Klavier, John?" for what
I mean... it's hilarious!
- Did I forget
to mention that he was hysterically funny?
- That slide
guitar playing. Hands down, in my opinion, the best ever.
And the list
could go on. And on. And... yeah, you get the idea. (Just see the "We Love George!" section for lots and lots of reasons.)
could also be a lot more eloquent... Because, frankly, George is my favorite person ever. But for now, I'll just wrap things
up by saying that George was one of the most talented musicians and songwriters ever; and his musical legacy is eternal.