7 Rockstars George Harrison Has Called Out
via Constantino / YouTube
Despite being referred to by many as a “shy Beatle,” George Harrison was never one to hide his strong opinions. Life is brief, therefore for him, one should not be coy in expressing one’s true feelings. George regularly discussed his opinions about other musicians. Here are the seven times that George didn’t hold back.
George’s 1976 interview in India Today gave him an outlet to express his frustrations to his music contemporaries, such as Pete Townshend of the Who, who he labeled as a “fake.” “Townsend! Yeah! Every time I’ve seen that guy he’s been so stoned and talking such a lot of nonsense that I don’t think he means any of the religious stuff he spouts.”
George discussed the modern musicians he admired and also spoke harshly about several well-known musicians, including Rod Stewart in an interview with India Today. “Rod Stewart’s music has improved since Tom Dowd’s producing him, but the guy himself, he’s got a brain that’s as small as a marble.”
George also didn’t want to hide his annoyance with the “Starman” singer, David Bowie. “And David Bowie ought to make up his mind what sex he is, and then decide what kind of music he wants to play.”
Speaking in the same interview with India Today, Harrison didn’t hold back his opinions of Elton John. “Well, Elton John’s music is something I’ve never thought much of,” He said. “It all sounds the same, though I think he’s written a good song once; many years ago, of course. His music is made to a formula: throw in lyrics, throw in four chords, shake well, and there it is, the new Elton John super-hit!”
George often criticized his former bandmate and fellow Beatle, and an altercation between the two was nearly recorded during the Get Back sessions. In an interview with Ray Martin, though, he made some of the most insightful and cutting remarks. In 1988, when The Beatles were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, George criticized Paul for citing an old business issue that was being sold anyhow as an excuse for not attending the event. “It’s really sad because we spent a long time this last year and the early part of—well, just the end of the year right before I came away from London, we had lots of dinners and meetings and we were all really on a great course, which we still are in a business sense of solving every problem we ever had, finally, after all these years. And it was just a shame that Paul should use, like, a sort of political sort of situation.”
While Bob Dylan wasn’t exactly someone whom George didn’t like, George still didn’t want Dylan to be the only star shining when the former created the Traveling Wilburys. Tom Petty claims that George approached Dylan and made it clear that the musician would be treated normally despite his celebrity status.
Both Neil Young and George Harrison performed together onstage, but despite this, Harrison was never a fan of the Canadian singer. In an unfiltered video wherein George was caught being mean-tongued to Young, he said: “I’m not a Neil Young fan. I hate it, yeah I can’t stand it.”