The Concert for George Harrison, featuring Eric Clapton, Joe Brown, Jools Holland with Sam Brown, Jeff Lynne, Paul McCartney, Billy Preston, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Ravi Shankar with Anoushka Shankar and Ringo Starr and organized by Olivia Harrison and Clapton, was held on November 29 at London’s Royal Albert Hall. Proceeds from the concert will be donated to The Material World Charitable Foundation, which Harrison established in 1973, the year he released the album Living In The Material World. “George gave the song royalties from that album to the foundation in order to allow people to explore other philosophies and cultures,” Olivia Harrison said.
“It was easy to pick the people for the show,” Clapton said. “A definite group of people were always involved in George’s life at one stage or another.”
“The show was Eric’s and Olivia’s idea to start with,” Lynne explained. “And I feel honoured to be among them.”
The main band backing band was led by Eric Clapton and featured: Jeff Lynne, Andy Fairweather Low, Albert Lee, Marc Mann and Dhani Harrison on guitars; Jim Keltner and Henry Spinetti on drums; percussionist Ray Cooper; Chris Stainton and Gary Brooker on keyboards; Jim Horn and Tom Scott on horns; Dave Bronze on bass; Katie Kissoon and Tessa Niles on backing vocals. Additional musicians included Jim Capaldi and Klaus Voormann.
The concert was performed in two halves. Clapton introduced the evening. This was followed by an original composition for George by Ravi Shankar performed by a 40 member Indian and Western Orchestra including Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and conducted by Anoushka Shankar. During this segment they were joined by Lynne on guitar and vocals and Clapton on backing vocals for ‘Inner Light’. Ravi Shankar also spoke about George Harrison.
Former Monty Python members Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin started the second half performing the classics ‘Sit On My Face’ and ‘The Lumberjack Song’. This was followed by:
"I Want To Tell You" performed by Jeff Lynne and the house band.
"If I Needed Someone" performed by Jeff Lynne, Eric Clapton, Andy Fairweather Low and the house band.
"Old Brown Shoe" performed by Gary Brooker and the house band.
"Give Me Love" performed by Jeff Lynne, Andy Fairweather Low and the house band.
"Beware of Darkness" performed by Eric Clapton and the house band.
"Here Comes The Sun" performed by Joe Brown and Andy Fairweather Low.
"That’s The Way It Goes" performed by Joe Brown and Andy Fairweather Low.
"Horse To Water" performed by Jools Holland, Sam Brown and the house band.
"Taxman" and 'I Need You' performed by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.
"Handle With Care" performed by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne.
"Isn’t It A Pity" performed by Eric Clapton, Billy Preston and the house band.
"Photograph" and "Honey Don't" performed by Ringo Starr and the house band.
"For You Blue" performed by Paul McCartney and the house band
"Something" performed by Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Jeff Lynne and house band.
"All Things Must Pass" performed by Paul McCartney and the house band.
"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" performed by Eric Clapton and Paul McCartney.
"My Sweet Lord" performed by Billy Preston and the house band.
"Wah Wah" performed by the full ensemble of participating musicians.
"See You In My Dreams," the final farewell to George, performed by Joe Brown and featuring the entire ensemble.