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BEATLES FANS TO BID FOR NEW GEORGE SONG

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An unreleased track by George Harrison is to be auctioned with a series of previously unseen images of the band.
The 1968 song, Hello Miss Mary Bee, comes on a reel-to-reel tape that also includes alternative recordings of several Beatles hits.
The track, influenced by Indian music, was written for George’s friend Mary Bee and produced at about the time that his first solo album, Wonderwall Music, was released.
It comes with letters from George to Ms Bee while he was in India with his first wife, Pattie Boyd. In one, Boyd wrote that Harrison had “just come into the kitchen singing Mary Bee, Mary Bee about to make a lovely cup of tea”.

GEORGE UNRELEASED RECORDING “HELLO MISS MARY BEE” GOING UP FOR AUCTION

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GEORGE HARRISON UNRELEASED RECORDING – of a track entitled “Hello Miss Mary Bee” recorded onto a reel to reel tape which includes other recordings of tracks The Beatles would have been working on at the time. A second reel to reel tape contains a recording of his “Wonderwall” album.

The two tapes come with a collection of correspondence to include postcards sent by George and his wife Patti Boyd to the vendor and a 6 page letter from Patti to the vendor. This incredible recording was made especially for the vendor whose name is “Mary Bee” back in early 1968 and was sent to her by George and Patti along with postcards and other recordings during 1967 & 1968. The song, which is approx 1 minute 40 seconds long, was recorded on an Emidisc Reel 2 Reel tape in 1968 at “Kinfauns” and is very much in the Indian style of the music that he was heavily influenced by and producing around the time of his first studio album “Wonderwall”.

The case of this tape has writing on which reads “Tape to Mary Bee”. The “Wonderwall” tape again has writing on the box which reads “Music from the film Wonderwall for Mary Bee”. The 6 page letter is a great read and has numerous references to the tapes. Patti talks about George working on the “Wonderwall” soundtrack and at one stage says she can’t send a tape of the music but then corrects herself (after speaking to George) to say that “George will tape his music”. She also says that George has “just come into the kitchen singing Mary Bee, Mary Bee about to make a lovely cup of tea”. There are 3 postcards from Patti & George included in the lot which are all addressed to Mary Bee and have been sent from India. The postcards mention where George & Patti have visited, how they are having their first yoga lesson and that she has been thinking of Mary when meditating.

 

On one George has written “Hello Mary – love George”. One of the postcards also starts by asking “Did you get the tapes?”. Tape 1 – Side 1 Contents: Track 1 – Never before heard track “Well Hello Miss Mary Bee”. 1.40 in duration. Track 2 – Beatles Across The Universe – runs from 2.16 to 5.40. Different to released version – faster, differing instrumentation and backing vocals. Recorded 4th Feb 1968. Track 3 – Beatles Inner Light – runs from 5.50 to 8.21 – again different to released version. Instrumental recorded in India during Jan 68. George vocals recorded at same time as Across the Universe in Feb 68. Released 15th March 1968 as b-side to Lady Madonna. Track 4 – Beatles Lady Madonna – runs from 8.27 to 10.41. Same as release. Recorded Feb 68 and released 15th March 1968. Track 5 – Instrumental Indian music – runs from 10.456 to 23.17 Track 6 – Beatles All Together 23.20 to 25.10 and continues on Side 2 from 0.00 to 0.35 Sounds same as released. Recorded May 67′ but not released until Jan 69′. Tape 1 – Side 2 Contents Track 7 – Beatles Christmas Time is Here Again – runs from 00.37 to 6.45 – as per 1967/68 flexi disc release. Recorded May 1967. Track 8 – Beatles Strawberry Fields – runs from 6.49 to 10.49 – same as release. Recorded Nov/Dec 1966. Track 9 onwards – Bob Dylan recordings – from 10.54 to 24.45. Appear to be same as albums/single releases. Includes a letter of provenance from the vendor along with her transcribed lyrics for the song.

 

Estimate: 10,000 GBP – 20,000 GBP


FENDER HAS JUST UNVEILED THE NEW LIMITED EDITION GEORGE ROSEWOOD TELECASTER

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Fender has just unveiled the new limited edition George Harrison Rosewood Telecaster.

The Rosewood Telecaster is based on the guitar Fender made for Harrison in 1969 that he also happened to play during The Beatles’ “Rooftop Concert.”  Per Fender, the original at the time was the first guitar made by the manufacturer to be made of all rosewood, thus, making it very unique.

The asking price for the Harrison Rosewood Telecaster is $2,499.99, and quantities are limited, with only 1,000 units available worldwide. The full specs on the guitar can be found at Fender.com


NEW ERIC CLAPTON DOCUMENTARY COMING NEXT YEAR – FEATURES INTERVIEW WITH GEORGE

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A new documentary about Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton: Life in 12 Bars, will premiere at the Toronto Film Festival before airing on Showtime in 2018.

The film features interviews with Clapton’s family, friends, musical collaborators, peers and heroes, including late musicians like B.B. King, George Harrison and Jimi Hendrix.

Along with Life in 12 Bars, the 2017 Toronto International film Festival lineup boasts a few other music-related projects, including the world premiere of Sophie Fiennes’ new doc about new wave icon Grace Jones, Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami. Sam Pollard’s new documentary, Sammy Davis, Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me will also debut at TIFF, while the festival will close with Egyptian filmmaker Amr Salama’s new movie, Sheikh Jackson, about an imam whose life is upended by the sudden death of Michael Jackson. The Toronto Film Festival will take place September 7th to 17th. As for Clapton, the guitarist has a handful of live dates scheduled for this fall. He’ll play two nights at Madison Square Garden in New York City September 7th and 8th, as well as four shows at the Forum in Los Angeles September 13th, 15th. 16th and 18th.


CONCERT FOR BANGLADESH

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14 years before Live Aid, on 1 August 1971, George Harrison, along with his friend and mentor Ravi Shankar and a host of other stars, pulled off something that had never been achieved, or even attempted before: the two Concerts For Bangla Desh at Madison Square Garden in New York.

George had been deeply moved when Shankar had brought to his attention the plight of millions of starving refugees, in what was formerly East Pakistan, who were suffering the effects of the Bhola cyclone of 1970 and the ‘Liberation War’ in their country. Five days before the concert, on July 27, George released his single ‘Bangla Desh’ on the Apple label, bringing this humanitarian crisis to the world’s attention in a way that only a world-famous former Beatle could. On the day of the single’s release, George and Ravi Shankar held a press conference to announce their ambitious concert that was to be held a few days later.

Following rehearsals in New York, the two concerts took place on 1 August at 2.30pm and 8pm in Manhattan in front of over 40,000 people. The audience was treated to a spectacular bill that included Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, Shankar, Leon Russell, Ringo Starr, Hindustani musician Ali Akbar Khan, Billy Preston, Klaus Voorman, Bobby Whitlock, Don Preston, Jesse Ed Davies, Carl Radle and the Apple-signed band, Badfinger.

The concerts, like the album, began with Ravi Shanker accompanied by sarodya player Ali Akbar Khan, tabla player Alla Rakha and Kamala Chakravarty on tamboura, performing ‘Bangla Dhun’.

There then followed George along with Ringo, Eric Clapton (who was not well), Leon Russell, Billy Preston, Klaus Voormann, Jim Keltner and eighteen other musicians. They performed ‘Wah-Wah’, ‘Something’, ‘Awaiting on You All’, ‘That’s the Way God Planned It’ sung by Billy Preston, Ringo’s ‘It Don’t Come Easy’, ‘Beware of Darkness’ and ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ featuring both George and Eric Clapton. Leon Russell then took centre stage for the medley of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Jumpin’ Jack Flash’ and the Coasters’ ‘Young Blood’.

George then performed ‘Here Comes the Sun’ with Badfinger’s Pete Ham on acoustic guitars and Don Nix’s gospel choir. George then picked up his white Fender Stratocaster and looked at the set list taped to the body of the guitar and saw ‘Bob?’ According to George: “And I looked around, and he was so nervous – he had his guitar on and his shades – he was sort of coming on, coming [pumps his arms and shoulders] … It was only at that moment that I knew for sure he was going to do it.” The audience went into raptures after a moment of quiet astonishment as this was Dylan’s first appearance before an American audience in half a decade.

For Dylan’s mini-set he was backed by Harrison, Leon Russell (playing Voormann’s bass) and Starr on tambourine; Dylan played five songs ‘A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall’, ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’, ‘It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry’, ‘Love Minus Zero/No Limit’ and ‘Just Like a Woman’. After which George and the band returned to perform ‘Hear Me Lord’, ‘My Sweet Lord’ and ‘Bangla Desh’.

For the evening show, which is widely regarded as superior to the first show, the songs played and the sequence they were played in were slightly different. After George’s opening and closing mini-sets he played ‘Wah-Wah’ and brought ‘My Sweet Lord’ forward in the order. That was followed by ‘Awaiting on You All’ and then Billy Preston performed ‘That’s The Way God Planned It’. ‘Hear Me Lord’ was dropped in the evening so that the post-Dylan set was just ’Something’ and ‘Bangla Desh’. Dylan shuffled his set a little and played ‘Mr. Tambourine Man’ in place of ‘Love Minus Zero/Mo Limit’.

Mixing the concert audio was undertaken at A&M Studios in Los Angeles during September. Music from both the afternoon and evening performances was used for the album; in the main it was the second show that was preferred. The songs from the afternoon show that were used are ‘Wah-Wah’, which starts with the evening version but cuts to the matinee, George’s band introduction, ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’ and the Leon Russell medley.

The triple LP box set was released in the US on 20 December 1971 and 10 January 1972 in the UK. “Harrison & Friends Dish Out Super Concert For Pakistan Aid” was the headline for Billboard magazine’s news story in the August 14 issue. “Almost all of the music reflected what must have been the feelings of each musician who gave his time and tremendous efforts for free, to help a helpless country.”

The album entered the Billboard chart on 8 January 1972 and went to No.2 on the US chart, where it spent 6 weeks, never quite making it to the top spot. In the UK it topped the charts, three weeks after its release. The fundraisers generated an estimated $250,000 for famine relief in the country, close to $1.5 million in today’s terms. The concert was released as a DVD in 2005, and continues (along with the album) to raise funds for what is now called the George Harrison Fund For UNICEF.

In 2006, Olivia Harrison attended a ceremony at Madison Square Garden to mark the 35th anniversary of the concerts and to unveil a permanent plaque in the arena’s Walk of Fame. Today we have become so used to artists supporting causes with charity concerts, charity recordings, and in many other ways, and it is wonderful that people use their fame in this way. However, George was way ahead of the curve and his humanitarian work was groundbreaking – proving to be an inspiration for many that have followed.

George Harrison was a true humanitarian.


GEORGE’S ‘SGT.PEPPER’ VOX UL730 AMP GOES ON SALE

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Through reverb.com, Heritage Gear is selling one of the Vox UL730 amplifiers George used on the Beatles’ Revolver and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

This was actually one of George Harrison’s UL730s and comes with two provenance documents confirming it was his, It was used in the studio on both Revolver and Sergeant Pepper- it has germanium transistor pre amp and four EL84 valve output stage giving beautiful 30 plus watts.
It was featured on TV around 2011 , has been exhibited in the Beatles Story, Liverpool and several other museums and has also had Bonehead from Oasis playing some Beatles and Oasis tunes through it. One of the photos above shows the amp when it was exhibited in The Beatles Story Liverpool. The amp is now available for $108.725,42. It comes with a choice of two matching speaker cabinets to go with the amp, one of which would be an extra £7000.