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George Harrison live: Colston Hall, Bristol with Delaney & Bonnie

On 1 December 1969 George Harrison watched husband and wife act Delaney and Bonnie Bramlett perform at the Albert Hall in London. The following night he joined them on stage in Bristol, for his first stage appearance since The Beatles’ final concert on 29 August 1966.

Harrison had met the pair in Los Angeles in 1968. Delaney & Bonnie had recorded an album with a host of other musicians including Leon Russell, Bobby Keys, Jim Price, Bobby Whitlock and Rita Coolidge called The Original Delaney & Bonnie – Accept No Substitute. Impressed, Harrison tried to release the album on Apple early in 1969, but the deal fell through.

Delaney & Bonnie had toured America with Blind Faith, who had Eric Clapton on guitar. When Blind Faith split up, Clapton joined the Bramletts’ current band. On 11 October 1969 the New Musical Express reported that Clapton, Harrison, John Lennon and an unnamed member of The Rolling Stones were likely to join the group on their forthcoming UK tour.

Following the opening night at the Albert Hall, Harrison went backstage and agreed to join the tour. Freed from the attentions of Beatlemania, he was able to be a largely anonymous band member, although he did sing songs including ‘Everybody’s Trying To Be My Baby’ on at least one occasion.

Harrison was there for five of the tour’s six dates, playing two shows each night. He appeared in Bristol, Birmingham, Sheffield, Liverpool and Croydon. He didn’t perform at the Newcastle shows on 5 December, instead briefly leaving the tour to visit his unwell mother.

Several of the shows were also recorded for possible album release – the result was 1970’s Delaney & Bonnie & Friends On Tour With Eric Clapton. Harrison was credited as “Mysterioso”.

Harrison had previously performed at Bristol’s Colston Hall with The Beatles on five occasions: 15 March 1963, 15 November 1963 and 10 November 1964.

Last updated: 25 May 2015
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