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Do you think George was dealing with depression from 66 to the break-up?
4 November 2013
8.05pm
SirFrankieCrisp
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In my opinion it seems like he was. Many of his songs that surfaced on ATMP or bootlegs/Anthology that were written during that time period deal with "Darkness" Beware of Darkness, All Things Must Pass. Many other songs dealt with not wanting to be where he was Everybody, Nobody (Ballad of Sir Frankie Crisp), Nowhere To Go, Sour Milk Sea. Then you have the ones where he is wanting to be recognized Run Of The Mill, Wah-Wah, Not Guilty, The Light That Has Lighted The World(doesnt fit time parameter, but shows the same sentiment.) I Want To Tell You seems like he is trying to explain his depression. I Live For You, My Sweet Lord, Art of Dying are seen as religious songs, but the bottom line is he is thinking about dying. 

As someone who is slowly emerging from depression I may be over analyzing these tunes, but they bring me comfort.

Am I correct? Am I missing any songs or anything from my analysis?  ahdn_george_05

4 November 2013
8.34pm
AppleScruffJunior
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I have never thought about that before, what an interesting thought. In my opinion I don't believe George had depression, none of the key people around him  (Clapton, Pattie, the Python gang, Hare Krishna devotees) ever said anything about George and depression although he did become more reclusive, not speaking to some people for days just chanting continuously and you'd piss him off if you interrupted him (he obviously wasn't the easiest person to deal with during that time). Being more involved with the Hare Krishna's he was thinking about all the things he had done in his life, he wanted to sort out his karma and become enlightened.  Thinking about everything he did obviously made him reflect on his death and I guess that's why he wrote those kind of 'depressing songs' but then again you always have his 'happy songs' 'Here Comes The Sun', Something (Hare Krishna devotees said George told them it was about Krishna). George's book 'I, Me, Mine' details the evolution of a lot of his songs and from what I recall, none of them really came around from depressing/dark moments. 

*loading witty comment-loading failed*

4 November 2013
8.45pm
meanmistermustard
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A lot of the ATMP songs would be more dark in subject due to being written around the White Album/Get Back sessions when tensions were high with John and Paul, throw in his religious desires to leave this mortal coil and be with God and its no real surprise the nature of the songs. But it wasnt depression.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
4 November 2013
9.13pm
SirFrankieCrisp
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Thank you for the replies, but I think that the things yall pointed out kind of aggregated in my head to someone who was experiencing a depression. 

This is my opinion, but can you not see a person who is seen by the world to have a perfect life with all the money, talent, and fame anyone person needs. He then is being belittled by his equals, so he begins to search for this spirituality as a way out because drinking and drugs were no longer able to mask the truth. I think that a Psych would look at that statement as a person who very possibly is depressed.

 

Here Comes The Sun which, based on the accounts I've read, was written at a time that could be described as a breakdown in George's self worth in the band.

I want to say thanks again! I can't wait to read 'I Me Mine" once this semester is over! 

4 November 2013
9.25pm
meanmistermustard
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Whilst George was treated shittily by John and Paul, he was shown a heck of a lot of respect by Dylan, Clapton and a whole lot of others which would have buoyed his spirits away from there – not to say its wasnt hell enduring mid -> late '68/early 69. And it would be unfair to say that the all of the Get Back rehearsals were unhappy times, listening to the sessions you can tell there were some moments of happiness (not to suggest that everyone depressed is miserable all the time). 

I just think its too easy to look at unhappiness and hard times and classify them as depression.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
4 November 2013
10.25pm
Linde
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Yeah, I agree with a lot that has been said. It never came across as if he was in a depression. He certainly was struggling and was annoyed with a lot of what was happening around him at that time. Does that necessarily mean he was in a depression? I don't really think so.

5 November 2013
4.05am
parlance
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The problem with depression is that it goes easily unnoticed or ignored by others. So you might be correct, but we'll probably never know.

I have to say it floored me when I read that "Isn't It a Pity" was begun in '66. I'd always thought it was written during the breakup like many of the others. I wonder what George was going through that prompted him to to write it.

parlance

Beware of sadness. It can hit you. It can hurt you. Make you sore and what is more, that is not what you are here for. - George

Check out my fan video for Paul's song "Appreciate" at YouTube and Vimeo.

5 November 2013
6.24am
bewareofchairs
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It's difficult to say, really. I think he might've been depressed from 1969-1973, but I don't know about during the Beatle years.

This quote from Pattie is rather interesting though: 

[on George after Rishikesh] "He became so very serious about meditating that the lightness did disappear. He became more sombre. He’d just go into another space. I don’t know … I felt maybe he was unhappy. He meditated for so long, for hours. It seemed to me as if he preferred to be in a meditative state than in a waking, conscious state. He liked the peace and calm. There was a lot going on. We weren’t even 30."

His friends always say he rarely talked about himself, so I could see it going unnoticed if he was.

5 November 2013
4.58pm
Inner Light
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I think George just reached a point in his life during that time in 1966 that he had enough of Beatlemania and with some of the problems they were having during that years tour including the Lennon remark and the Manila fiasco, he need some space. He said when they boarded the plane in San Francisco after the last live show that 'Well I guess I'm not a Beatle anymore'. Once meditation kicked in, he found peace and quiet and think he really enjoyed that which of course he kept to the end of his life. 

The further one travels, the less one knows
5 November 2013
7.39pm
fabfouremily
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^ Yeah, I think it was just that, tired of ''being a Beatle''. There's not much else apart from a few song lyrics to suggest he was depressed, and if he was he seemed to recover okay with no help (unlikely), so I really don't think so.

''We're just knocked out. We heard about the sell out. You gotta get an album out, you owe it to the people. We're so happy we can hardly count.''

6 November 2013
5.19pm
mccartneyalarm
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George was rather introverted to begin with…I hate the label…but he was the "quiet one." He was tired of being a Beatle. He was really freaked out over Manila. He was afraid of being on stage because of the potential danger. (I think there was an incident with firecrackers that freaked him out once). So, he was dealing with all of that. He was deeply commited to his search for answers through his spirituality. He found peace in that (the meditation and chanting) and often people who are deeply involved in their spirituality are mistakenly labelled obsessed with death (since death is what happens at the end of your life). I'm not sure that is indicative of depression. It certainly indicates he had a lot on his plate and he was trying to find peace any way he could. I hope he wasn't clinically depressed. I hope he was just finding himself. When someone is clinically depressed, they present with signs of inability to face the day: they can't get out of bed; they can't motivate themselves to get dressed, to see people, to write or do their work. I don't think George was in that dark place or someone (like Patti or Clapton) would have mentioned it. (He also would not have struck up an affair with Maureen Starkey if he was clinically depressed). Just my opinion.  

"And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make."

6 November 2013
5.59pm
meanmistermustard
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mccartneyalarm said
George was rather introverted to begin with…I hate the label…but he was the "quiet one." He was tired of being a Beatle. He was really freaked out over Manila. He was afraid of being on stage because of the potential danger. (I think there was an incident with firecrackers that freaked him out once). So, he was dealing with all of that. He was deeply commited to his search for answers through his spirituality. He found peace in that (the meditation and chanting) and often people who are deeply involved in their spirituality are mistakenly labelled obsessed with death (since death is what happens at the end of your life). I'm not sure that is indicative of depression. It certainly indicates he had a lot on his plate and he was trying to find peace any way he could. I hope he wasn't clinically depressed. I hope he was just finding himself. When someone is clinically depressed, they present with signs of inability to face the day: they can't get out of bed; they can't motivate themselves to get dressed, to see people, to write or do their work. I don't think George was in that dark place or someone (like Patti or Clapton) would have mentioned it. (He also would not have struck up an affair with Maureen Starkey if he was clinically depressed). Just my opinion.  

a-hard-days-night-ringo-8A cherry bomb was thrown onto the stage whilst they were performing If I Needed Someone during the second performance at the Mid-South Coliseum on the 19th August 1966. All the Beatles stopped to check on the others and then carried on. More mayhem to what was a horrendous tour. 

The quality is very poor but you can here it around the 1:12 mark in the video below.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
6 November 2013
6.45pm
Bungalow Bob
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meanmistermustard said

affair with Maureen Starkey if he was clinically depressed). Just my opinion.  

a-hard-days-night-ringo-8A cherry bomb was thrown onto the stage whilst they were performing If I Needed Someone during the second performance at the Mid-South Coliseum on the 19th August 1966. All the Beatles stopped to check on the others and then carried on. More mayhem to what was a horrendous tour. 

The quality is very poor but you can here it around the 1:12 mark in the video below.


After the cherry bomb exploded onstage, the Beatles didn't even stop playing their instruments. Times have sure changed, as the Kings Of Leon proved after ending their concert immediately after a pigeon pooped on Jared Followill's face. http://www.today.com/id/38415388/#.UnqNNSTcu3I

I'd never heard this story about George and the cherry bomb. No wonder he disliked playing in front of unruly crowds.

6 November 2013
6.56pm
meanmistermustard
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a-hard-days-night-ringo-8The Beatles and most other bands would have all kinds of stuff thrown at them whilst performing, i remember reading about a cigarette lighter nearly hitting John once. They just got on with it with the only reason for a stoppage was fans breaking thru the protection or causing near riots. Nowadays if an empty water bottle is thrown some performances storm off. 

Not saying they should play throw, just changed times and shows the chaos the Beatles endured in concert. If The Beatles left the stage over some hard jelly babies the whole town/city they were playing would be left in ruin. 

Sometimes looking at what John, Paul, George and Ringo had to endure between '63 and '66 its more a surprise they toured for so long.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
6 November 2013
7.14pm
Ahhh Girl
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My aunt-by-marriage Nancy was at that concert in the Mid-South Coliseum. She thinks it is pretty cool that I have finally found The Beatles.

Can buy Joe love! Here's the link that explains how. http://www.beatlesbible.com/forum/getting-better/forum-changes/page-9/#p110183

 

6 November 2013
8.08pm
bewareofchairs
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mccartneyalarm said
George was rather introverted to begin with…I hate the label…but he was the "quiet one." He was tired of being a Beatle. He was really freaked out over Manila. He was afraid of being on stage because of the potential danger. (I think there was an incident with firecrackers that freaked him out once). So, he was dealing with all of that. He was deeply commited to his search for answers through his spirituality. He found peace in that (the meditation and chanting) and often people who are deeply involved in their spirituality are mistakenly labelled obsessed with death (since death is what happens at the end of your life). I'm not sure that is indicative of depression. It certainly indicates he had a lot on his plate and he was trying to find peace any way he could. I hope he wasn't clinically depressed. I hope he was just finding himself. When someone is clinically depressed, they present with signs of inability to face the day: they can't get out of bed; they can't motivate themselves to get dressed, to see people, to write or do their work. I don't think George was in that dark place or someone (like Patti or Clapton) would have mentioned it. (He also would not have struck up an affair with Maureen Starkey if he was clinically depressed). Just my opinion.  

He also received a death threat in 1966. According to Alistair Taylor George was already having reservations about being a Beatle in 1963. I agree with you, but I do think his affair with Maureen was a result of two people feeling very lonely and lost. It seemed different to his other affairs around that time.

Also, with all of his drug problems and being as self-absorbed as he was, I'm not so sure someone like Clapton would've picked up on George's behavior.

6 November 2013
8.21pm
wetsroosa
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meanmistermustard said
a-hard-days-night-ringo-8The Beatles and most other bands would have all kinds of stuff thrown at them whilst performing, i remember reading about a cigarette lighter nearly hitting John once. They just got on with it with the only reason for a stoppage was fans breaking thru the protection or causing near riots. Nowadays if an empty water bottle is thrown some performances storm off. 

Not saying they should play throw, just changed times and shows the chaos the Beatles endured in concert. If The Beatles left the stage over some hard jelly babies the whole town/city they were playing would be left in ruin. 

Sometimes looking at what John, Paul, George and Ringo had to endure between '63 and '66 its more a surprise they toured for so long.

They did try to stretch out the stage from the fans when they could, especially near the end. IIRC, the Candlestick Park farewell concert had the band squarely on the second base line on the diamond and the stage itself was blocked by a fence, and I don't think there were any fans on the field itself.

Listening to that performance, if there's a song where you can tell the band was half-assing it (especially George) on that last tour, it's "If I Needed Someone." George sounds horrible in every performance of that song from that tour that I've ever heard, and I've heard 5 renditions of it now- Tokyo, Manila, D.C., San Fran and now Memphis.

"It's called Sex Panther by Odeon. It's illegal in nine countries. Yep, it's made with bits of real panther, so you know it's good."

6 November 2013
8.40pm
meanmistermustard
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Even with the fans off in the distance concerts would often be plagued by them breaking throw the police barricades and making a beeline for the stage before being rugby tackled. You can it on some bootlegs where one of the four Beatles remarks on the chaos playing out in front of them.

Its pretty save to say that George didnt give a shit on the final tour and, wanting it gone as soon possible, was going throw the very basic motions. 

Another to add to your collection – Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto – tho more screams than Beatles.

"Well, probably we'll sell less records, less people'll go to see the film, we'll write less songs, and we'll all die of failure" (John Lennon 8/64)
6 November 2013
9.16pm
Bungalow Bob
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meanmistermustard said

Another to add to your collection – Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto – tho more screams than Beatles.


George's voice is so hard to hear, that I think he might be singing "If you're listening to this song, you may think the chords are going wrong… but they're not… "

MMM, where are these recordings coming from? Fans in the audience who happened to be carrying the primitive 60s reel-to-reel recorders?

6 November 2013
9.32pm
Ron Nasty
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In the case of Maple Leaf, yes. It was recorded by the father of a family attending the concert, and the full thing starts in the car on the way there, and ends in the car on the way home – including chats with other fans before and after, the support sets, and The Beatles set – making it one of the most complete of a Beatles show there is.

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty
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