Two New George Harrison Vinyl Collection Box Set Videos

The George Harrison Vinyl Collection box set is now accompanied by a short promo film showing some behind-the-scenes factory footage detailing the actual manufacture of the records and album covers that make up the set:

Also, Paul Sinclair from the great Super Deluxe Edition site has uploaded a good quality “unboxing” video:

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Splinter – The Place I Love

One of our favourite places in Sydney to crate dig is Revolve Records and Relics, and it has come up with another Beatle-related treasure for the collection.

Splinter was one of the first bands signed to George Harrison’s Dark Horse record label in 1974, and The Place I Love was their debut album:Splinter coverSplinter rear coverThey were a two man band hailing from the town of South Shields in England. Bill Elliott and Bob Purvis wrote all their own material, were produced by George Harrison, and were joined on this album by Harrison (on guitar, mandolin, bass, harmonium and percussion and using the pseudonyms Hari Georgeson, P. Roducer and Jai Raj Harisein), as well as the likes of Klaus Voormann (bass), Billy Preston (organ), Jim Keltner (drums) and Gary Wright (piano).

The album was recorded at Harrison’s Friar Park home studio.

This is an Australian pressing. The cover is a gatefold, graced with a sepia-toned historic street scene of The London Hotel, taken in the late 1800’s in Splinter’s home town of South Shields.  Splinter gatefold

Here’s the LP’s ever-stylish Dark Horse label:Splinter label

There’s also a single sheet insert with the song lyrics printed on each side:

Splinter insert

And an inner bag made of heavy paper and stamped with the Dark Horse logo to hold the record:Splinter inner

Splinter’s Bill Elliot has another strong Beatle connection. John Lennon had earlier invited him to perform the song ‘God Save Us‘ with The Elastic Oz Band. Released as a 7″ single on Apple Records in the US in 1971. This was a protest song in support of the underground publication Oz magazine, then embroiled in the famous Oz obscenity court case.God Save Us

 

Ravi Shankar – ‘In Celebration’ 4CD Set

In 1995 George Harrison was producer of an impressive 4 CD compilation box set honouring the musical life and genius of his friend and mentor, the Indian master musician Ravi Shankar. It was called In Celebration and it formed a key part of the celebrations that year marking Shankar’s 75th birthday.

The four CDs trace four distinct aspects of Shankar’s output: Classical Sitar; Orchestral and Ensembles; East-West Collaboration; and Vocal and Experimental.

The set was released on the Angel label (an EMI subsidiary specialising in classical music), and George’s own Dark Horse Records label.

Because it was expensive the following year (1996) there was also an In Celebration – Highlights single-disc version for those wanting a taste from each of the four CDs:Ravi Highlights1Ravi Highlights2Ravi Highlights3

We’ve had a copy of the single disc Highlights for years and have often enjoyed escaping into the world of Indian music. As a result we’ve been on the lookout for a long time for a reasonably-priced second-hand copy of the full box set – now long out of print. At last we’ve got our hands on a copy (via eBay and from a seller based in France of all places).

The larger set is a much more detailed and elaborate affair, with silver embossed printing details and individual artwork for each CD. When we say “box set” this is actually presented as a tall, deluxe hard-back book, with the four CDs stored in holders inside the front and rear covers.Ravi 1Ravi 2

In between them is a beautiful 60 page book with a foreword by George Harrison and a lengthy essay, richly illustrated with photographs, on the life and work of Ravi Shankar by Timothy White, a former Editor In Chief of Billboard magazine: Ravi 4Ravi 3

There’s a handy glossary of terms included at the back – a big help in understanding and appreciating Indian classical music, its instruments and main themes and influences.

This is all really nicely done as a package and a great selection of, and tribute to, Shankar’s life and work.Ravi 5Ravi 6Ravi 7Ravi 8_0003

Four Beatles-related Finds at Record Fair

We’ve just returned from the annual Glebe Record Fair – one of the biggest of the year – held in the Sydney suburb of Glebe:Glebe-April-2015

The two photos below were taken just after opening time at 9.00 am. This was before the venue really became absolutely packed with patrons hungrily seeking out vinyl, books and CDs. As you can see it’s already very crowded:Glebe 2015 1Glebe 2015 2

And the crowds just got bigger and bigger. In the melee that ensued we were lucky to discover four interesting little 45 singles. First up, a US white-label pressing of George Harrison’s ‘This Song’ from 1976 on his Dark Horse label, complete in its original outer sleeve. First pressings of this came with these white labels, while later issues have the traditional colour label:Harrison This Song1Harrison This Song2

At the same vendor’s stall we also discovered this unusual New Zealand pressing of Paul McCartney and Wings controversial ‘Give Ireland Back to the Irish’, dating from 1972. As was the case in most of the rest of the world this is on a custom Apple label:Give Ireland Back

A little later in another pile of 45s we spied this nice US pressing (and original picture sleeve) of Mary Hopkin singing ‘Goodbye’:Goodbye1Goodbye2

By this time we were feeling pretty weary, and the crowds had built considerably. We were just about to leave and doing one final trawl through some singles at another table when out popped this rare little gem:Seaside Woman1Seaside Woman2Seaside Woman3

It’s a 1986 UK pressing with re-mixes of the Suzy and the Red Stripes song ‘Seaside Woman‘ (a.k.a Linda McCartney and husband Paul). This was originally released on the A&M label back in 1980 with this cover:Seaside Woman4

Unboxing “Living in the Material World” DVD/BluRay Box Set

Haven’t got this yet because it is only available in the UK so far….but one fan has posted a video of his unboxing of the Deluxe Edition of the DVD/BluRay/CD set:

George Harrison Film Premiere, DVD, Book and CD Announced

Today on georgeharrison.com comes the formal announcement and official details of the Martin Scorsese film “George Harrison: Living in the Material World“.  Here’s an extract from the press release:

George Harrison: Living in the Material World” focuses the imaginative and inspired eye of one of cinema’s most pre-eminent filmmakers on one of the world’s most influential men. The film takes viewers on the musical and spiritual voyage that was George Harrison’s life, much of it told in his own words. The result is deeply moving and touches each viewer in unique and individual ways.

Academy Award-winning director Martin Scorsese traces Harrison’s life from his musical beginnings in Liverpool through his life as a musician, a seeker, a philanthropist, and filmmaker. Scorsese weaves together interviews with Harrison and his closest friends, performances, home movies, and photographs. Much of the material in the film has never been seen (or heard) before. The result is a rare glimpse into the mind and soul of one of the most talented artists of his generation and a profoundly intimate and affecting work of cinema.

The film includes interviews with Eric Clapton, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, George Martin, Paul McCartney, Yoko Ono, Tom Petty, Phil Spector, Ringo Starr and Jackie Stewart. They speak honestly and frankly about George’s many talents and contradictions.

The film was produced by Scorsese, Olivia Harrison and Nigel Sinclair. Margaret Bodde served as the film’s executive producer and the film was edited by David Tedeschi (who previously worked with Scorsese, Bodde and Sinclair on the Grammy Award-winning “No Direction Home: Bob Dylan” and with Scorsese and Bodde on the Rolling Stone concert film “Shine A Light”).

Scorsese comments, “Like so many millions of people, I first came to know George through the music, which was the soundtrack of our world. The Beatles’ music, those beautifully lyrical guitar breaks and solos, those unforgettable songs of George’s, like “I Me Mine” or “If I Needed Someone,” and the images, in magazines, on album covers, the TV appearances, the newsreel footage, the Richard Lester movies; and then there was the world after the Beatles, when George and his music seemed to open up and flower. I will never forget the first time I heard All Things Must Pass, the overwhelming feeling of taking in all that glorious music for the first time. It was like walking into a cathedral. George was making spiritually awake music – we all heard and felt it – and I think that was the reason that he came to occupy a very special place in our lives. So when I was offered the chance to make this picture, I jumped at it. Spending time with Olivia, interviewing so many of George’s closest friends, reviewing all that footage, some of it never seen before, and listening to all of that magnificent music – it was a joy, and an experience I’ll always treasure.”

Olivia Harrison notes, “Martin Scorsese’s intuition towards George was evident the first time we met to discuss this project. He sensed what George was about: his music, his strong beliefs, his art, his place in the Beatles story, and his extraordinary life afterwards. Marty’s wonderful film has found all of that and more.”

“This film was an extraordinary journey for all involved and it has been a sheer pleasure working with Martin Scorsese and Olivia Harrison to bring the amazing story and legacy of George Harrison to life,” adds Sinclair.

George Harrison: Living in the Material World” will be released in the UK on 10th October in three editions – DVD, Blu-ray and DVD Double play (DVD/ BD combi pack), and a beautifully packaged DVD / Blu-Ray Deluxe Edition, which includes an exclusive CD of previously unheard tracks from George Harrison, and a book of photography to accompany the film.

In the United States HBO has acquired the TV broadcast rights to Scorsese’s film, which will debut in two parts — on October 5 and October 6, 2011.

In late September, Abrams Books will publish Olivia Harrison’s “George Harrison: Living in the Material World“, a personal archive of photographs, letters, diaries, and memorabilia from George’s life that reveals the arc of his life, from his guitar-obsessed boyhood in Liverpool, to the astonishment of the Beatles years, to his days as an independent musician and bohemian squire. The book release is intended to coincide with the release of Scorsese’s film.

George Harrison – When We Was Fab (Box Set)

Just got a copy of the 1988 limited edition, box set single “When We Was Fab” by George Harrison. Here’s the outer cover:

Inside the little box is the vinyl single in a picture sleeve:

As you can see, the picture used for the outer box is slightly different in a number of areas to the one used for the record picture sleeve inside. If the artwork for the both the box and the picture sleeve looks familiar its because part of it is taken from the drawings of the Beatles for the “Revolver” cover – done by long-time friend of the band, Klaus Voormann.

There’s also a fun cutout sheet of George in his Sgt Pepper uniform in the box (which is obviously paying homage to the Sgt Pepper cutout sheet); and also a fold-out colour poster:

The box set label for the “When We Was Fab” single is different to the one used for the standard vinyl single release – notice on the standard issue there are  multiple Dark Horse logos as opposed to the single Dark Horse logo on the box set version:

There was also a 12″ extended play vinyl single and a CD single release of this song as well. Graham Calkin’s Beatle pages has all the details on these.

And just to remind you of the song and the official video (directed by Godley and Creme):