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Why is George under-appreciated?
12 July 2011
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mithveaen
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My head hurts to discuss now. a-hard-days-night-ringo-14

Here comes the sun….. Scoobie-doobie…… Something in the way she moves…..attracts me like a cauliflower… Bop. Bop, cat bop. Go, Johnny, Go. Beware of Darkness…  I believe in SH...
12 July 2011
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GniknuS
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The Inner Light made a great point about George not really being a flashy player and I don't think that can be understated. People like flash and substance, it catches their attention, and while George was a great player, nothing he did really stands out like that. But, getting to know the Beatles, I think that's why so many are drawn to George, he never really liked all of the attention. I like his quote after they were done touring that he no longer had to be a Beatle and he began to seek out the true meaning of the world and his place in it.
Maybe George is under-appreciated in mass society, but I prefer it that way. You can learn a lot from looking at his life and lyrics and generally the answers you get are found within yourself, so his messages aren't really the type that can be plastered on billboards or commercials.

I sat on a rug, biding my time, drinking her wine
13 July 2011
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Inner Light
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GniknuS said:

The Inner Light made a great point about George not really being a flashy player and I don't think that can be understated. People like flash and substance, it catches their attention, and while George was a great player, nothing he did really stands out like that. But, getting to know the Beatles, I think that's why so many are drawn to George, he never really liked all of the attention. I like his quote after they were done touring that he no longer had to be a Beatle and he began to seek out the true meaning of the world and his place in it.
Maybe George is under-appreciated in mass society, but I prefer it that way. You can learn a lot from looking at his life and lyrics and generally the answers you get are found within yourself, so his messages aren't really the type that can be plastered on billboards or commercials.

Thanks for the comments. Very well said!

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15 August 2011
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oneafter909
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Aww, my dad just said something like this last weekend.

He kept shoving 'George is so boring, the most boring of the four' in my face. Maybe that's just the general public view, you know? 

Step on the gas and wipe that tear away.
15 August 2011
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The Walrus
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GniknuS said:

The Inner Light made a great point about George not really being a flashy player and I don't think that can be understated. People like flash and substance, it catches their attention, and while George was a great player, nothing he did really stands out like that. But, getting to know the Beatles, I think that's why so many are drawn to George, he never really liked all of the attention. I like his quote after they were done touring that he no longer had to be a Beatle and he began to seek out the true meaning of the world and his place in it.
Maybe George is under-appreciated in mass society, but I prefer it that way. You can learn a lot from looking at his life and lyrics and generally the answers you get are found within yourself, so his messages aren't really the type that can be plastered on billboards or commercials.

I agree with this. It also doesn't help that he was in the Beatles, widely considered the best band of all time. If I asked my peers who they thought the best guitarists ever were, they would probably say Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton (with Pete Townshend not far behind Clapton). Hendrix was the eponymous front man in his band (and even some people my age who are fans of his have never heard of Mitch Mitchell or Noel Redding), and Clapton's bands aren't household names. George is expected to be good because he was in a band with John Lennon and Paul McCartney, so he's shunted down the pecking order of great guitarists.

I know most of you aren't at that familiar with football/soccer, but anyway, Barcelona are probably the best team in the world right now. In particular, they have a world class front three. Lionel Messi is recognised as the best player in the world, David Villa dragged Spain to the World Cup final, and Pedro has a very good goalscoring record. However, many people think Pedro should be replaced with another player (Franck Ribery and Alexis Sanchez are common names, both star players for club and country), despite his excellent record, as he's playing alongside Messi and Villa, who have long established themselves as high quality players, and Barcelona also have an outstandingly creative midfield. Pedro (and George) are subsequently underrated because they are surrounded by good players/musicians.

And I neeeeeeeeed her all the time
15 August 2011
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mr. Sun king coming together
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The Walrus said:

I know most of you aren't at that familiar with football/soccer, but anyway, Barcelona are probably the best team in the world right now. In particular, they have a world class front three. Lionel Messi is recognised as the best player in the world, David Villa dragged Spain to the World Cup final, and Pedro has a very good goalscoring record. However, many people think Pedro should be replaced with another player (Franck Ribery and Alexis Sanchez are common names, both star players for club and country), despite his excellent record, as he's playing alongside Messi and Villa, who have long established themselves as high quality players, and Barcelona also have an outstandingly creative midfield. Pedro (and George) are subsequently underrated because they are surrounded by good players/musicians.

Or, my hockey version of that. My Ottawa Senators had the Cash Line: Dany Heatley - Jason Spezza - Daniel Alfredsson. Heatley was the 50 goal scorer (50 is the magic number in hockey), Alfredsson was the guy who has been in Ottawa for a decade and loved by the fans, and then you had Spezza, who was always considered as the skilled guy who was only as good as the people around him. Even though he is as good as the skill. Overlooked. Just like George.

I tried to think of something powerful and moving… and failed.  "You were given a choice between war and dishonor - you chose dishonor, and you shall have war" - Winston Churchill
15 August 2011
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GniknuS
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Well, George isn't really in the same ballpark as a Hendrix or a Jeff Beck when you're talking chops, but I'm not really a fan of those cliché "greatest guitar players of all time" things anyway. Guitar is about style, so John, George and Paul all had a particular style and it's hard to say any were better than the others because they all could play and they all had a different style. As a guitar player myself, I have tremendous respect for anyone that can play because it's not easy and requires a lot of dedication. My favorite electric player is Leo Nocentelli and I almost guarantee he didn't make Rolling Stone's top 100 list but his style is so unique and funky that it's really hard to replicate. I often wonder what guidelines these publications use for coming up with their top whatever of all time lists because there are some headscratchers.

Anyway, back on topic, George is great but his style does not appeal to everyone so that's why he's under-appreciated. To compare with John Lennon and Paul McCartney, the greatest songwriting team in the history of pop music, you need to really stand out or have a name like Ringo. George's stuff definitely stands out if you have the temperament for it, meaning if you can extract some meaning from Within You, Without You and if you can deal with a lot of spiritual songs about God. A lot of people can't, that's the reason I'm not crazy about most of George's solo stuff because it's not really my style of music. I do, however, appreciate that George was being true to himself and what he believed in.

I don't really know if George is that under-appreciated though, isn't Here Comes The Sun the number one Beatles download on iTunes? Maybe people don't realize it's George, but is it any more likely that they'd hear Hey Jude and realize it was Paul? I'd have to guess that George has been the reason that many, many people have delved into the Beatles, I remember the first Beatles song that got me into them was Taxman, and I'm sure the same is true of many of his other tunes, perhaps with the exception of Don't Bother Me. a-hard-days-night-george-10

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26 October 2011
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biancaharrison
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GniknuS said:

Well, George isn't really in the same ballpark as a Hendrix or a Jeff Beck when you're talking chops, but I'm not really a fan of those cliché "greatest guitar players of all time" things anyway. Guitar is about style, so John, George and Paul all had a particular style and it's hard to say any were better than the others because they all could play and they all had a different style. As a guitar player myself, I have tremendous respect for anyone that can play because it's not easy and requires a lot of dedication. My favorite electric player is Leo Nocentelli and I almost guarantee he didn't make Rolling Stone's top 100 list but his style is so unique and funky that it's really hard to replicate. I often wonder what guidelines these publications use for coming up with their top whatever of all time lists because there are some headscratchers.

Anyway, back on topic, George is great but his style does not appeal to everyone so that's why he's under-appreciated. To compare with John Lennon and Paul McCartney, the greatest songwriting team in the history of pop music, you need to really stand out or have a name like Ringo. George's stuff definitely stands out if you have the temperament for it, meaning if you can extract some meaning from Within You, Without You and if you can deal with a lot of spiritual songs about God. A lot of people can't, that's the reason I'm not crazy about most of George's solo stuff because it's not really my style of music. I do, however, appreciate that George was being true to himself and what he believed in.

I don't really know if George is that under-appreciated though, isn't Here Comes The Sun the number one Beatles download on iTunes? Maybe people don't realize it's George, but is it any more likely that they'd hear Hey Jude and realize it was Paul? I'd have to guess that George has been the reason that many, many people have delved into the Beatles, I remember the first Beatles song that got me into them was Taxman, and I'm sure the same is true of many of his other tunes, perhaps with the exception of Don't Bother Me. a-hard-days-night-george-10

good point. I agree with you, I think people who really appreciate his solo career are those who at least believe in God. Maybe that's why he's my favourite Beatle. But most people are not quite prepared for that, even those who believe. It's much easier to accept a song about love or peace than about faith.

When you've seen beyond yourself then you may find peace of mind is waiting there
26 October 2011
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meanmistermustard
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Not sure its just the God thing that puts people off George's solo career. He hit a low point in the mid-70's with his albums where he went thru difficult times personally and with music company executives who declined the products he created until he finally lost interest and didnt bother to publicise Gone Troppo. Its not that surprising that his 2 of his strongest and most successful albums (Cloud Nine and Brainwashed) were after a long period of absence from the music scene and he could create and record at his own pace without having to meet deadlines and please those in charge. All Things Must Pass came from years of being granted only a small number of songs on a Beatles album; he finally had the chance to record songs that were up there in terms of quality alongside John and Paul's material as well as being inspired by the separation and finally having the freedom of being out of the claustrophobia of the Beatles. 

There are some very fine songs within that period, really strong, just not great albums. Any artist is judged by what they create and release.

As a guitar player he gets so much recognition by fellow musicians for just how good he is/was but in the public's eye he will always be Beatle George in the shadow of Beatle John and Beatle Paul, and be measured and valued by what he did in The Beatles but under that shadow. It doesnt help that if you do get to Georges solo catalogue you get ATMP, an absolute masterpiece, and then it slowly begins to dip. (I believe Johns solo career did the same; 2 really good openers and then the dip. Still some really good material just not great albums.) 

If a boxset is ever released i am convinced it will show the world how darn good he was. I just hope Georges future releases dont go the same way as John's where the same tracks are shoved down your throat constantly.

He told us not to get overwhelmed by grief and whatever thoughts we have... to keep them happy, because any thoughts we have of him will travel to him wherever he is. (John Lennon - 27/8/67)
21 January 2012
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Because John wrote most of the big songs, Paul was the cute lovable one, and Ringo was funny and had a cool name that everyone remembers. I swear whenever talking about the Beatles with someone who isn't that familiar with them, Ringo is the first name to come up, because it's such a cool name. George is my favorite Beatle. I've met many Beatles fans who say that George is their favorite too. I wouldn't say he's under appreciated, I'd just say that John and Paul are over appreciated which is a good and bad thing. So yeah. Go George. a-hard-days-night-george-4

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21 January 2012
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George is not under-appreciated, he just wasn't any good at what he did.

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21 January 2012
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unknown said:

George is not under-appreciated, he just wasn't any good at what he did.

I have no idea how to reply to that, more amazed to see it written. I know its all about opinions but to say George wasnt 'any good' is mind-boggling to me.

 

In response to Mrs. Lovell, i think John is over-appreciated in the manner that Yoko wants him to be remembered, to the point of her omitting, adding or altering parts of his character/legacy wherever appropriate.

With Paul its a strange one. He is viewed as a legend of music yet his back catalogue is vastly underrated in places. Ive read many articles which spew out high praise yet at the same time mock his work, be it music (in all its different forms), art, poetry etc.

Its great how much Ringo is loved, not just by the public but by so many very highly successful music artists, old and new.

He told us not to get overwhelmed by grief and whatever thoughts we have... to keep them happy, because any thoughts we have of him will travel to him wherever he is. (John Lennon - 27/8/67)
21 January 2012
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kedame
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meanmistermustard said:

unknown said:

George is not under-appreciated, he just wasn't any good at what he did.

I have no idea how to reply to that, more amazed to see it written. I know its all about opinions but to say George wasnt 'any good' is mind-boggling to me.

 

In response to Mrs. Lovell, i think John is over-appreciated in the manner that Yoko wants him to be remembered, to the point of her omitting, adding or altering parts of his character/legacy wherever appropriate.

With Paul its a strange one. He is viewed as a legend of music yet his back catalogue is vastly underrated in places. Ive read many articles which spew out high praise yet at the same time mock his work, be it music (in all its different forms), art, poetry etc.

Its great how much Ringo is loved, not just by the public but by so many very highly successful music artists, old and new.

I think this is highly accurate. It amazes me to see the public praise for Paul being one of the "greats" and then to go online and see people disparage almost everything he's ever done. He's a good musician, a good songwriter, and a good singer flatout. No questions asked...yet some people just can't wait for the opportunity to tear him down.

John, like you said, was also a good singer, a good songwriter, and a good musician. Just that. He wasn't some deity who was the only Beatle with any talent...the only true artist, whatever the hell that means. In all fairness to Yoko, I can't say I wouldn't try to make my dead husband seem as good as possible either. It's like John said, "Everyone loves you when you're six feet in the ground." That isn't to say, however, that he wasn't any good before he died. Just not as good as Rolling Stone Magazine would have you believe and certainly not mountains above Paul. I actually read a youtube comment the other day that said John taught Paul everything Paul knows from the moment they met, regardless of the fact that Paul already knew a lot more about guitar and composing music before he ever met John than John did. After Paul taught John the little he knew, they learned the rest together. They learned at the same pace and accomplished milestones together.

I think George was good, too, but I don't think he had the drive to accomplish what John and Paul did in the entertainment world. He wanted the money, he wanted the girls, he loved playing the music...but I bet he could have been just as happy playing his guitar if no one knew his name. I think that lack of drive led to some pretty mediocre material, mixed with some undeniably great material. I think he just got tired of it all.

Ringo is...well, Ringo. He isn't a great songwriter. He isn't the best musician (although he is a damn good drummer). He doesn't have the best voice. But dammit...he's Ringo Starr.

"You can manicure a cat but can you caticure a man?" John Lennon- Skywriting by Word of Mouth
21 January 2012
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meanmistermustard
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Sadly for George he got tired of being a beatle and all the hysteria and madness that brought before they stopped touring and even began to resent it. Even sadder was that the world was not willing to let him not be 'Beatle George' and he hated that too. Plus he wasnt willing to do what the record companies were wanting from him, so over time he lost the drive, as Kedame said.  It was a kick in the teeth to have his work rejected by Warner Brothers. And all that counts against him, in the media and by the public. I cant help but feel if George had been more willing to play along with the music business his stock would have been higher.

However he was willing to use The Beatles to help promote his latest project. Its no coincidence he finally agreed to do The Beatles Anthology at the same time he was facing financial turmoil. Not that i wouldnt have done the same. If you have a meal ticket and you're really hungry you cash it in, you dont starve to death.

 

Its the same for Ringo to some extent. In interviews he often has to ask if they can talk about his new record and not about being ditched when rerecording Love Me Do, whether John was a funny guy, or what drumstick he used on Pepper.

 

Paul has nearly always been willing to discuss the Beatles, tho less so in the years just after the split and with Wings. So much so he has been criticised for doing so, often by George – ha!

 

John was generally accommodating as well. He knew he had to, tho would show his irritation at times. Plus he would change his opinion/mind frequently so had a lot to say. I should also add that John was willing to change the details when it suited, all that nonsense about never touching a guitar during his self imposed retirement.

He told us not to get overwhelmed by grief and whatever thoughts we have... to keep them happy, because any thoughts we have of him will travel to him wherever he is. (John Lennon - 27/8/67)
21 January 2012
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GniknuS
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This is an interesting topic because I don't believe that John or Paul are underappreciated. You can't bring Ringo into the mix because he's not on their level as a songwriter. I still have an internal debate as to whether George was a great songwriter or not...Paul and John certainly were and they only made each other better. For all of the technical things that go into music, the reality is that it comes down to whether a song can stand out or stick with you and from Rubber Soul on, George's stuff does just that. I still wouldn't call him a great songwriter though, I would be more inclined to say he had a unique perspective on music and life which translated into some cool music.
I like George so much because his spirit is such a huge part of what made the Beatles so different. Take Love You To, I don't care if you love that track or hate that track, would Revolver be Revolver without that song? No one else was making music like that and no one else really has since then. If I were to sum up the Beatles, I think I would say that they just made music that no one else has really ever been able to copy and without George there is no way that their stuff would have that uniqueness to it.
Plus George is a great example of someone who was able to use a drug to make a completely positive change in his life. The comedian Bill Hicks has a hilarious bit about how you never see a positive drug story in the news that I would recommend to check out on youtube, but the most basic description of a real drug trip is that it forces you to look at your life from a completely true perspective. It's really cool and not at all scary if you are prepared to face the answers that you'll find in your own mind. So George was able to take something like God which he says he was embarrased about even saying the word God before LSD, and his whole life was shifted in that direction because of that experience.
This isn't a pro-drugs post, but the myth about a drug like LSD being this terrible thing is just that, it's a myth created to keep people from introspectively exploring their own lives. The only bad trips are from people who aren't prepared to make the necessary changes in their lives. So I like to look at George as a beacon of hope for anyone looking to change their life, maybe drugs aren't the answer for everyone, but serious questions need to be asked internally and all LSD does is forces those issues to come out rather than surpressing our real issues which we are all so good at. Anyway, rant over, but I guess my point would be that George could be used as an example in so many scenarios of life.

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22 January 2012
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Mrs. Lovell - love your name.

Any connection to Jim Lovell, Commander of Apollo 13? (+ no astronaut of the Apollo space program spent more time in space)?

But as for John and Paul being over-rated, I put that in the category of "unknown" 's comment about George not being any good.

John and Paul have arguably been the greatest songwriters in rock and were the driving force behind the world's greatest band. How do you over-rate someone like that?

As for George not being any good, I'm with meanmr.mustard on this; I wouldn't know how to begin to respond, and it probably wouldn't change Unknown's mind. Negative energy!

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)
22 January 2012
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By the way, George said he always wanted to be successful, not famous - an interesting distinction.

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22 January 2012
4.55pm
Zig
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Why is George under-appreciated? I guess it depends on who is doing the appreciating. I appreciate him just fine, thank you very much.

As for the general public (a.k.a. sheep), he probably is under-appreciated because he did not want to play the game. It is no secret he did not "suffer fools gladly" as Paul said of his friend. From what I've read he disliked the press conferences, did not relish "photo ops" with other celebrities and probably hated the fact that he was expected to pretend he did like it. George obviously had dear friends who were major celebrities, but those friendships were based on liking each other for who they really were as people, not just their fame.  

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" said:

By the way, George said he always wanted to be successful, not famous - an interesting distinction.

 

To me, that sums it up perfectly. Whether one finds him to be talented or not, is irrelevant. That debate is so opinion based, that it would be foolish of me to give it its head. One of the biggest reasons why George is my favorite is because I view him to be the one who was most true to himself, his family and the rest of those he loved. Sheep, however, seem to prefer celebrities who smile at the cameras just to sell (out) more of what they are offering. Or, they go for the type who bring attention to themselves via outrageous acts.

George was niether of those and I appreciate him for it.a-hard-days-night-george-7

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23 January 2012
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Inner Light
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George as was said before didn't want to be famous but did want to be successful. I feel he really cared about people and was very loyal to his friends but would not put up with phony people. George did over 90 percent of the guitar work in the Beatle songs and I feel he made a major contribution to the music. He was true to himself and never sold out. You will not find too many if any negative comments about him from anyone who has worked with him. His son loved him very much and has been quoted as saying "he was a great man" When someone comes up to me and asks me what kind of person I am, I ask them to talk with my wife. I have never liked adulation and playing the game and I think that is why George has always been my favorite. He was such an inovative guitarist and really in my opionion help change the face of music as we know it today.

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23 January 2012
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I think that things had change across the years. When I start with the beatlemania, back in the 80's, George was the less popular of the group.

Even I don't like very much, maybe cos I was a child and my taste wasn't mature.

I think that after the George's death he was more appreciated, and was a doubble feeling for me. In one side, I was happy cos much more people discovered this genious. In the other side, I feel sad cos George was "only mine" and now I must be share.

 

Sorry If I made any gramathical mistake, English isn't my lenguage.

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