Songs From The Material World: A Tribute To George Harrison

Songs From The Material World: A Tribute To George Harrison

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Songs From The Material World: A Tribute To George Harrison

While overshadowed by the one-two punch of Lennon and McCartney, George Harrison was not only an integral part of the Beatles, but an accomplished solo artist who arguably outpaced his bandmates in the quality and breadth of his post-Fab Four work. After Harrison's death from brain cancer in November of 2001, a tribute to "the quiet Beatle" and his music was inevitable. Songs From the Material World: A Tribute to George Harrison, released in March of 2003, finds Harrison contemporaries like Bill Wyman, John Entwistle, and Dave Davies contributing effective, if not particularly memorable versions of Harrison's words and music. His significant contributions to the Beatles catalog are represented -- "While My Guitar Gently Weeps," "Taxman," "Here Comes the Sun" -- as are highlights from his solo career, including "Devil's Radio" (from Cloud Nine), "Isn't It a Pity," and "Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)." While performances on the album are generally good, the collection suffers a bit from the pacing issues that plague so many multi-artist compilations. For example, Big Head Todd & the Monsters' haunting take on "Within You, Without You" is followed by a sly, cheeky "Savoy Truffle" from They Might Be Giants. Both groups' versions are respectful without being trite, and innovative without losing the spark of the source material. But their collective effect is diminished by faulty sequencing. Other performances on Material World are worth noting. Not surprisingly, Todd Rundgren effortlessly replicates the grandeur of "While My Guitar Gently Weeps," and the MC5's Wayne Kramer captures perfectly the droning, trippy vibe of "It's All Too Much." The album concludes with Jay Bennett and Edward Burch's "Isn't It a Pity," the chorus of which seems like a gentle, but firm reminder from Harrison himself that it's better to give than to receive. To that end, a portion of Material World's profits are earmarked for the Material World Charitable Foundation, created in 1973 to sponsor diverse forms of artistic expression and the exploration of alternative life views and philosophies. Material World will no doubt be of value to collectors interested in the alternate versions of Harrison classics; for the rest, it's a musical document of the principles by which Harrison lived his life.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/25/2003
Label: Koch Records
UPC: 0099923839026
catalogNumber: 8390

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Chris Clark   Keyboards
Tommy Emmanuel   Guitar
Bill Wyman   Bass,Percussion,Vocals
Graham Broad   Percussion,Drums
Mark Clarke   Vocals
Dennis Diken   Drums
John Entwistle   Bass
Chris Goss   Guitar,Vocals
Frank Mead   Horn
Bryan Myers   Percussion
Berry Oakley   Bass,Background Vocals
Nick Payn   Horn
Beverley Skeete   Vocals,Background Vocals
Larry Tagg   Bass
Leslie West   Vocals,Slide Guitar
Jim Babjak   Guitar
Pat DiNizio   Guitar,Vocals
Mike Mesaros   Bass
Prarie Prince   Drums
Twiggy Ramirez   Bass,Vocals
Terry Norman Taylor   Guitar
Dave Amels   Piano
Mark Hitt   Guitar,Vocals
Steve Luongo   Drums,Vocals
Christopher Joyner   Hammond Organ,Electric Piano
Nick Lucero   Drums
Marc Ford   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Vocals,Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Todd Rundgren   Instrumentation
John Kruth   Liner Notes
Bill Wyman   Horn Arrangements
Joe Berger   Engineer
Stuart Epps   Engineer
Milton Glaser   Illustrations
Bryan Myers   Engineer
Nick Payn   Horn Arrangements
Kurt Reil   Engineer
Leslie West   Arranger
Todd Park Mohr   Producer,Engineer
Ben Elliot   Engineer
Jeff Chenault   Art Direction
Steve Luongo   Producer
Jim Roberts   Engineer
Dirty Boys   Producer

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Songs From The Material World: A Tribute To George Harrison 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Released on what would have been George Harrison¿s 60th birthday (Feb. 25, 2003), ¿Songs From The Material World: A Tribute to George Harrison¿ is one of the strongest musical compilations in memory and a fitting tribute to the so-called ¿Quiet Beatle.¿ A wide-ranging mix of Harrison¿s contemporaries and those he influenced provide reworkings of a dozen songs covering his years with the Fab Four and his adventuresome solo career. While some efforts only partly measure up to the original (Marc Ford¿s ¿I, Me, Mine¿ and a joint effort by Jay Bennett and Edward Burch covering ¿Isn¿t It A Pity¿), other artists hit the mark perfectly. The Smithereens conjure up the magic of their early work on ¿I Want To Tell You¿ with a combination of ringing guitars and artful vocal harmonies. They Might Be Giants infuse just the right amount of playfulness and distinctive horn section riffs to tackle ¿Savoy Truffle.¿ Todd Rundgren delivers a dead-on version of ¿While My Guitar Gently Weeps,¿ until the ending guitar solo where he blazes with a more fiery attack than that used by Eric Clapton. And who would have thought the decidedly rocking ¿Taxman¿ delivered by the Beatles in 1966 would work as a retro-styled swing number in 2003? Bill Wyman¿s Rhythm Kings prove it does. The collection also allows rock fans to reflect on the loss of another seminal and often-unsung hero; John Entwistle recorded his upbeat version of ¿Here Comes The Sun¿ before his death last summer in Las Vegas at age 57. And Kinks guitarist Dave Davies¿ ¿Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)¿ recalls how Harrison¿s words ¿ 16 months after his death from cancer on Nov. 29, 2001 ¿ continue to speak to a world in need of his enlightened voice.