EMI Studios, Abbey Road
Engineer: Ken Scott
On his 26th birthday, George Harrison went alone to EMI Studios on Abbey Road, where he recorded solo versions of three songs.
The purpose for the session is unclear, although it is likely that the recordings were meant as demos for the other Beatles to learn their parts from. They were simple recordings taped on eight-track, with no producer present.
The first to be recorded was ‘Old Brown Shoe’. Harrison recorded two takes with vocals and piano, onto which he overdubbed two electric guitar tracks. One of these guitar overdubs was played low on the fretboard, and was adapted by Paul McCartney for the bass part on The Beatles’ recording, while the other was higher and included a solo.
Harrison then recorded two takes of ‘All Things Must Pass’, singing live to his tremolo guitar accompaniment. A second track also featuring guitar and vocals was then recorded.
‘Something’ was the final song of the day, and again featured vocals and electric guitar. A piano overdub was also recorded. The songs were all mixed and cut to acetate discs which were taken away by Harrison.
Despite trying on six different dates to interest The Beatles in ‘All Things Must Pass’ during the Get Back/Let It Be sessions, they never recorded the song properly. Instead it became the title track of Harrison’s 1970 triple album.
Versions of each of the day’s recordings were included on 1996’s Anthology 3, although the mix of ‘All Things Must Pass’ omitted Harrison’s second vocal part, and ‘Something’ lacked the piano overdub.
Also on this day...
- 2020: George Harrison Woodland Walk in Liverpool announced
- 1972: UK single release: Give Ireland Back To The Irish by Wings
- 1970: Recording, mixing: You Always Hurt The One You Love by Ringo Starr
- 1970: Recording, mixing: Man We Was Lonely by Paul McCartney
- 1968: George Harrison celebrates his 25th birthday in India
- 1965: Filming: Help!, the Bahamas
- 1964: George Harrison’s 21st birthday
- 1964: Recording: Can’t Buy Me Love, You Can’t Do That, And I Love Her, I Should Have Known Better
- 1963: Live: Casino Ballroom, Leigh
- 1963: Editing, mixing: Please Please Me album
- 1962: Live: Casbah Coffee Club, Liverpool
- 1961: Live: Lathom Hall, Liverpool
- 1961: Live: Aintree Institute, Liverpool
- 1943: George Harrison is born
Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.