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George Harrison Most Talented Beatle?
8 January 2013
11.52am
bewareofchairs
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meanmistermustard said
I think its incredibly unfair on George to measure him up against what John and Paul wrote during the time of the Beatles, especially in quantity. Within You, Without You is so much heavier in terms of content and lyrics than anything Paul wrote on Pepper possibly with the exception of "I'd love to turn you on" from A Day In The Life. The songs George wrote during the White Album period are just as good as most of what John and Paul wrote and the same can be said for Revolver and Abbey Road, Something and Here Comes The Sun being two of the best tracks on that release. And not everything John and Paul wrote pre-Revolver was immense so you cant throw that at George.

As for solo is Johns catalogue that much better than George's? Most people say yes but when asked for examples theyve only heard All Things Must Pass and if anything a selection of 'hits', much else is based on the preconception as written in the press that theyre dull, dreary and uninspired which, to be polite, is complete bollocks. John's preconception is that he was amazing and his solo work is incredible, outside of Imagine, POB but do many other albums hold up as being classics? Thats not meant to be an attack on John, im a huge fan of Johns solo work, there is a heck of a lot of great music that pass folks by, but the same is true for George. The same as not everything Paul has released is mindblowing, there are many tracks that dont stand up to the standards Paul has set (tho Paul deserves far more credit for his catalogue than many are willing to give).

 

I agree with all of this. It's not fair to compare what George did during The Beatles to John and Paul because they started earlier, were able to help each other, had all of George Martin's attention and were allowed as many takes as they needed. George was pretty much on his own aside from getting the odd bit of advice, and it seems like his lack of songs had more to do with their egos than his songwriting ability, as was made evident by All Things Must Pass (the album) and Sour Milk Sea.

8 January 2013
6.04pm
Long John Silver
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unknown said 
You think John is better than Paul, but they are equals. That would all be an opinion, even saying they're equally talented is an opinion.

John and George's solo careers are pretty equal, but I think I like George's more, because I really only like half of Some Time In New York City, Double Fantasy and Milk and Honey. Also, George put out All Things Must Pass, and Living In The Material World, which are pretty fantastic albums, I should say.

Of course it is an opinion, but generally accepted opinion. Do you ever hear someone appreciate George more than John or Paul by musical critics, general audience? Lennon/McCartney is the most successful musical partnership, and that is a fact.  Someone can think Beatles suck, and that is opinion, but is it generally accepted opinion? Definitely not. I like George and I think he was very talented musician, but I couldn't never compare him to John or Paul. 

 

So by half you mean when you take off Yoko from the album :D .

 

 

meanmistermustard said 
Why isnt Rock and Roll an album?

I agree that John had a good output but Mind Games, Walls and Bridges, Rock and Roll and half of Double Fantasy are equal to what George put out in Thirty Three and 1/3, Brainwashed, George Harrison, Living In The Material World and Somewhere In England. Gone Troppo has its highlights too (Wake Up My Love, Thats The way It Goes, I Really Love You, Mystical One, and the title track) and i havent heard Dark Horse or Extra Texture in a good while because they arent commercially available. Cloud 9 and All Things Must Pass are an equal match with Imagine and POB.

 

 

Because those are cover of old rock n roll songs. As for comparing Imagine and POB to Cloud 9 and ATMP, it once again comes to personal preference  but songs like Working Class Hero, Imagine, Look At Me, Jealous Guy, Isolation, Mind Games, Woman, Love, Out of Blue, Nobody Loves You, Watching the Wheels etc... to me personally they just can't be compared, but of course we all have different taste.

 

 

Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see.
8 January 2013
9.26pm
unknown
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Long John Silver said

unknown said 
You think John is better than Paul, but they are equals. That would all be an opinion, even saying they're equally talented is an opinion.

John and George's solo careers are pretty equal, but I think I like George's more, because I really only like half of Some Time In New York City, Double Fantasy and Milk and Honey. Also, George put out All Things Must Pass, and Living In The Material World, which are pretty fantastic albums, I should say.

Of course it is an opinion, but generally accepted opinion. Do you ever hear someone appreciate George more than John or Paul by musical critics, general audience? Lennon/McCartney is the most successful musical partnership, and that is a fact.  Someone can think Beatles suck, and that is opinion, but is it generally accepted opinion? Definitely not. I like George and I think he was very talented musician, but I couldn't never compare him to John or Paul. 

So by half you mean when you take off Yoko from the album :D .

Pretty much, yeah. The only exception is Luck of the Irish, I like her voice for that song.

 

All living things must abide by the laws of the shape they inhabit
9 January 2013
12.29am
Long John Silver
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Haha but that is not fair then :D . And yeah, it is not bad on that song, oh and We are all water it is not that bad either.

Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see.
9 April 2013
2.00pm
Mocker
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Depends what defines talent really. None of the Beatles were the most talented at their instruments, in the world. Some may argue Paul was a pioneer on the Bass etc. but all in all, they were great because of their talent at making great songs. It is as simple as that. And if that is what their great talent was then, then I suppose that it was a collective talent. Though as far as the Beatles success goes, yes, it was 4 corners to the square (as McCartney says) - but the huge success in my opinion can mostly be attributed to the talented songwriting combination of John and Paul. George came into his own towards the latter era of the Beatles and certainly reached their level of songwriting with such strokes of genius as Something, Here Comes The Sun etc. and was a remarkable man.

Post-Beatles he certainly had a debut solo to match anyone...

20 June 2013
4.59pm
beatallabout
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George is not the most talented, but he's by far the biggest improvement. There's no way you can forecast that the guy struggling on the first 2 albums is the same guy who composed and sang While My Guitar, Something, Here Comes The Sun, and displayed such a masterful musicianship in the 68-69 period. However, the most talented all-around is Paul.

21 June 2013
12.49pm
fabfouremily
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I agree with what you say about George, the change/improvement in that guy is almost beyond belief! Don't get me wrong, I love circa '63 Georgie but, musically, he is so much more superior as little as three years later.

''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.''

21 June 2013
12.58pm
Ron Nasty
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a-hard-days-night-ringo-8 I think exactly the same can be said for Paul and Ringo. Paul's bass playing was astounding by '66, as he went about changing the role of bass from part of the rhythm track to a lead instrument. And Ringo was doing things like Tomorrow Never Knows and Rain which still drop the jaw. John, as a guitarist, was perhaps the one to improve least over the years.

"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty
21 June 2013
1.08pm
fabfouremily
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^ Definitely. All three matured a lot musically as they matured in every other way. John didn't improve that noticeably though, no (except in terms of lyrics, which they all did to some degree).

They all got better as they went through the sixties, I think, and it's quite nice to listen to music from different periods and experience that.

''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.''

21 June 2013
7.25pm
Linde
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They were all talented in their own ways.

There.

22 June 2013
4.20am
...ontherun
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Kick ass thread here... Going with Paul myself though

A square is not a square when the sides are less than four...
26 June 2013
12.47am
Monkey Finger
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I think Paul was the best overall musician in the group and is one of the best multi-instrumentalists ever in pop music.

I have to agree with all who have said George was most improved. I think he may have also worked harder than John and Paul because writing and playing did not seem to come as naturally to him as it did the others. But wow, did he ever grow and evolve. I have to wonder if he would have ever reached the heights he did reach without having been in the orbit of two genius songwriters. I think he was smart enough and competitive enough to absorb all of it and make it into his own style. I also think the Indian influence made him a more disciplined musician and probably helped develop his songwriting.

Lest anyone think I'm not giving him enough credit, let me also say that I don't think John nor Paul would've become the musicians/writers they became without having each other to bounce off of creatively.

What all four of them brought to the table was just a magical combination, like lightning in a bottle. I'm just grateful they all found each other.

27 June 2013
1.42pm
fabfouremily
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^ I agree with you completely. Had they not have been born within a few years of each other, in the same city, they probably wouldn't have found each other and, therefore, would not have become (individually and group-wise) what they became. If you believe in fate, then this is a good example.

''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.''

12 August 2013
6.06pm
The eggman
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              I think that in the last years George´s work was better than John´s or Paul´s. His guitar playing was awesome and his songs were as good as best Lennon/McCartney compositions. Paul can be the most talented at his instrument, but in terms of songwriting John is better in my opinion. John´s song have more variety. Paul was the king of pop/rock songs, but John was an innovator and you could see his thoughs and his soul in his songs. And George, well, he didn´t write many songs in the Beatles, but they are all great, with maybe one or two exceptions (We could not say that about Paul, he has many mediocre songs). And in their solo careers happens the same. Paul has many great tunes, but the best post-beatles tunes were written by John and George (Ringo has written some kickass songs too). 

              But the most important thing is that the Beatle were four talented individuals, each one in his own way, and without one of them the Beatles are nothing.

12 August 2013
8.32pm
fabfouremily
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^^ I disagree with something you've said, I've always thought that Paul was the one who had the most variety. He's covered almost every type of music out there, if you include his solo efforts too. John could be quite flexible too but not as much as Paul, I don't think. If you look at John's solo catalogue, what do you find? Variety? I don't.

''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.''

13 August 2013
5.22am
The eggman
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fabfouremily said
^^ I disagree with something you've said, I've always thought that Paul was the one who had the most variety. He's covered almost every type of music out there, if you include his solo efforts too. John could be quite flexible too but not as much as Paul, I don't think. If you look at John's solo catalogue, what do you find? Variety? I don't.

 

                I was talking about the Beatles. But anyway, Paul never wrote experimental songs as good as "SFF" or "I Am The Walrus". Maybe I´m mistaken bc I never heard his whole solo career. If I am mistaken, please let me now and tell me about that Paul solo songs. I´m really interested.

13 August 2013
2.10pm
Ben Ramon
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The eggman said

fabfouremily said
^^ I disagree with something you've said, I've always thought that Paul was the one who had the most variety. He's covered almost every type of music out there, if you include his solo efforts too. John could be quite flexible too but not as much as Paul, I don't think. If you look at John's solo catalogue, what do you find? Variety? I don't.

 

                I was talking about the Beatles. But anyway, Paul never wrote experimental songs as good as "SFF" or "I Am The Walrus". Maybe I´m mistaken bc I never heard his whole solo career. If I am mistaken, please let me now and tell me about that Paul solo songs. I´m really interested.

You don't think Paul experimented with a wide range of styles in the Beatles? Seriously? On the White Album alone he has Beach Boys/Chuck Berry rock and roll pastiche (Back In The USSR), ska (Ob-La-Di), acoustic folk (Blackbird, Mother Nature's Son, I Will), baroque pop (Martha My Dear), blues (Why Don't We Do It In The Road?), country (Rocky Raccoon), experimental (Wild Honey Pie) garage rock (Birthday), proto heavy metal (Helter Skelter) and 30s music hall (Honey Pie). In fact, I'm hard pressed to think of another album where one songwriter tackles so many genres. And that's just one album!

I agree with you that Paul never wrote an experimental song as good as Strawberry Fields or Walrus, but there's tons and tons of experimentation in his solo career.

SHUT UP - Paulie's talkin'
13 August 2013
3.27pm
parlance
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^^ And he was responsible for the tape loops in Tomorrow Never Knows. He didn't write the song, but in the spirit of experimenting, he helped pushed some songs further than they would have gone.

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.

13 August 2013
3.39pm
Von Bontee
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...making John paranoid that it was always HIS songs that were being experimented on. ("A Day In The Life", "Across The Universe")

One day, a tape-op got a tape on backwards, he went to play it, and it was all "Neeeradno-undowarrroom" and it was "Wow! Sounds Indian!" -- Paul McCartney
13 August 2013
8.46pm
acmac
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The eggman said

But anyway, Paul never wrote experimental songs as good as "SFF" or "I Am The Walrus". 

I agree, but then John never did again, either. His solo career was not particularly innovative or diverse, musically. The Beatles' experimental peak ("Tomorrow Never Knows," "A Day In The Life," "Blue Jay Way," plus "Walrus" and "SFF") was very much a collaborative effort between the Beatles, George Martin, and even Geoff Emerick. There was a really magical chemistry at work there (also the Beatles were in their twenties, often the peak decade for pop artists). Paul often did his best basslines for George or John songs, and similarly I think John's songs, by virtue of their oddball lyrics and John's indecision about how to produce them, lent Paul the perfect opportunity to exercise his experimental side. He's shown that side consistently throughout his solo career (McCartney II, The Fireman, the general imaginativeness of his arrangements), though never again to such great effect (because again, he wasn't working within that magical collaboration). If we only had the Beatles catalogue to look at, it would make sense to argue that John was more experimental than Paul, but when you take their solo years into account, the argument doesn't really stand up, IMO.

Von Bontree said

…making John paranoid that it was always HIS songs that were being experimented on. ("A Day In The Life", "Across The Universe")

Yes, good old "you can't win for losing" John, lol. "Paul was too square and nitpicky!" 5 minutes later... "Paul was too loose and experimental!" 

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