George Harrison Tribute Streaming Free For 24 Hours
Starting today, November 29th, 2012 at 7:00 AM PST, George Harrison’s YouTube page began streaming Concert For George. This amazing tribute concert was shot at The Royal Albert Hall in London on November 29th, 2002, ten years ago today and one year after George’s death in 2001. The show features Eric Clapton, who also served as musical director, along with Jeff Lynne (ELO), Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Ravi Shankar, Tom Petty, the Monty Python players and an incredible group of rock music’s dignitaries and visionaries, including of course George’s son Dhani Harrison on guitar.
Concert For George was directed by David Leland and produced by Ray Cooper, Olivia Harrison and Jon Kamen in aid of The Material World Charitable Foundation, which George founded and set up in 1973 with royalties received from the release of his album Living In The Material World and single “Give Me Love”.
This film is and hour and forty minutes of pure bliss for any music fan. For me, watching this film was akin to attending Mass in the Sistine Chapel. Not only is the musicianship and song selection superb, but the level of emotion emanating from the stage is incredible and undeniable. Many times during the performance it’s clear that the musicians are barely holding on to their smiles, with a deep sense of grief and loss still visible just below the surface.
The ending of Concert For George is particularly poignant and touching. It’s a song called “I’ll See You In My Dreams”, sung and played spectacularly on the ukulele by Joe Brown. Joe’s story in itself is amazing. He first met the Beatles back when all were kids and they were the opening act for his band, Joe Brown & The Bruvvers. Although Joe never achieved the international notoriety of his famous pals, he always remained close to them. You can see the look of wonder in Paul McCartney’s eyes as he sits behind the piano watching Joe sing and play “I’ll See You In My Dreams”.
I usually don’t get emotional when I watched films, but this one caught me right square on the chinny chin chin. By the end I found a tear or two rolling down my cheek. I was awash with melancholy, bittersweet feelings that left me ultimately feeling grateful, happy and content. I suppose maybe that was the message. The stream is offered for free for the next 24 hours only. So settle in tonight and watch this little gem of a film that was put together so meticulously by a group of friends and family sharing the same vision of tribute for such a wonderful songwriter, musician and human being known to us all as George Harrison.