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Author Topic: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps  (Read 1831 times)

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nimrod

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Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« on: June 19, 2013, 11:18:55 PM »

Personally I love this song, along with Something, its my favourite George song, I dont think its as good as Something, structure wise its a lot simpler, but the way its recorded makes it so powerful and huge, its a real guitarists song, Clapton is magnificent imo.


I look at you all see the love there that's sleeping
While my guitar gently weeps
I look at the floor and I see it needs sweeping
Still my guitar gently weeps

I don't know why nobody told you
How to unfold your love
I don't know how someone controlled you
They bought and sold you

I look at the world and I notice it's turning
While my guitar gently weeps
With every mistake we must surely be learning
Still my guitar gently weeps

I don't know how you were diverted
You were perverted too
I don't know how you were inverted
No one alerted you

I look at you all see the love there that's sleeping
While my guitar gently weeps
I look at you all
Still my guitar gently weeps



"I wrote While My Guitar Gently Weeps at my mother's house in Warrington. I was thinking about the Chinese I Ching, the Book of Changes... The Eastern concept is that whatever happens is all meant to be, and that there's no such thing as coincidence - every little item that's going down has a purpose.
While My Guitar Gently Weeps was a simple study based on that theory. I decided to write a song based on the first thing I saw upon opening any book - as it would be a relative to that moment, at that time. I picked up a book at random, opened it, saw 'gently weeps', then laid the book down again and started the song."

George famously asked his mate Eric Clapton the play on the song...

"We tried to record it, but John and Paul were so used to just cranking out their tunes that it was very difficult at times to get serious and record one of mine. It wasn't happening. They weren't taking it seriously and I don't think they were even all playing on it, and so I went home that night thinking, 'Well, that's a shame,' because I knew the song was pretty good.
The next day I was driving into London with Eric Clapton, and I said, 'What are you doing today? Why don't you come to the studio and play on this song for me?' He said, 'Oh, no - I can't do that. Nobody's ever played on a Beatles record and the others woulnd't like it.' I said, 'Look, it's my song and I'd like you to play on it.'

So he came in. I said, 'Eric's going to play on this one,' and it was good because that then made everyone act better. Paul got on the piano and played a nice intro and they all took it more seriously."

George Harrison
Anthology

"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" was ranked #136 on Rolling Stone's list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time", #7 on their list of the 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time, and #10 on their list of The Beatles 100 Greatest Songs.
In an online poll held by Guitar World magazine in February 2012, "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" was voted the best of Harrison's Beatle-era songs.


Personnel

George Harrison – double-tracked vocal, backing vocal, acoustic guitar
Paul McCartney – harmony vocal, bass, piano, Hammond organ
John Lennon – electric guitar
Ringo Starr – drums, tambourine, castanets
Eric Clapton – lead guitar
Personnel per Ian MacDonald
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tkitna

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2013, 11:53:50 PM »

Most overrated Beatle song ever. It just drags along forever with Eric Clapton getting so much attention for a guitar solo that George himself could have handled very easily. Never liked it.

Hello Goodbye

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2013, 11:56:34 PM »

Some people here dislike the released version with Eric Clapton on lead guitar, preferring the acoustic version released on Anthology 3.  I like both versions very much.  It was one of my favorite songs on The Beatles LP set because of Eric Clapton's lead guitar.  His name wasn't listed in the liner notes, but we just knew, at that time in 1968, that it was Eric Clapton playing that beautiful guitar solo.

I didn't know anything about I Ching and I remember being upset by the lyrics when I first heard them.  I felt like George Harrison was scolding us (me) for being unenlightened.  I was comfortable with my own beliefs and level of awareness in my late teen years but I felt I was being reprimanded by my favorite Beatle.  As I grew a little older, I thought of While My Guitar Gently Weeps more of a song than a form of criticism of Western views.



The Beatles - While My Guitar Gently Weeps (2009 Stereo Remaster)



While My Guitar Gently Weeps ☮ Beatles (acoustic)
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Klang

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2013, 12:17:56 AM »


I remember it being the musical highlight of the album among me and my friends at the time of its release. While we liked plenty of other songs on it, this one seemed to be the real gem.

I never took the lyrics personally, as though I was being reprimanded. It was all those others, the "bad" people that George was preaching at - lol.

Very dramatic and - yes - huge.

Proving once again that George's contributions were far from trivial. Hope the others knew that.

 :)

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2013, 12:26:26 AM »

I never took the lyrics personally, as though I was being reprimanded. It was all those others, the "bad" people that George was preaching at - lol.

You were more enlightened than I was in 1968, Klang.    ;D
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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2013, 12:47:38 AM »

1971...

George Harrison - While my guitar gently weeps - The Concert For Bangladesh




1987...

George Harrison and Eric Clapton - While my guitar gently weeps (HQ)
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blmeanie

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2013, 01:20:14 AM »

Absolutely love the opening.  Best part of the song.  I like it, don't feel it is overrated.
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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2013, 02:12:51 AM »

Absolutely love the opening.  Best part of the song.  I like it, don't feel it is overrated.



Eric Clapton - While my guitar gently weeps (HQ)(Concert for George)
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nimrod

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2013, 03:27:24 AM »


Eric Clapton - While my guitar gently weeps (HQ)(Concert for George)


That video for me doesnt nail it Barry, for a start he hasnt got the right sound, on the album he played Georges Les paul.
I remember when I got the white album the week it came out, I was astounded that George had turned into a rock guitar god :)

Didnt know it was Eric, but man what a solo, there is so much emotion and technique in it , I could never play like that in a million years (neither could George)
People say to me, what is so good about Clapton, he mainly plays boring pentatonic scales all the time, theyre missing the point, he has the touch of a virtuoso, and that touch is evident on this track. He makes the guitar sound like it crying.

"In an online poll held by Guitar World magazine in February 2012, "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" was voted the best of Harrison's Beatle-era songs."

Im not surprised..
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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2013, 03:48:18 AM »

That video for me doesnt nail it Barry, for a start he hasnt got the right sound, on the album he played Georges Les paul.

Kev, I posted that video in response to blmeanie saying that he loved the opening.  We see Paul playing piano for the entire song just as he did in the original recording.
 
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nimrod

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2013, 07:34:32 AM »

Kev, I posted that video in response to blmeanie saying that he loved the opening.  We see Paul playing piano for the entire song just as he did in the original recording.
 

yes I see, that concert for George is one of my favourite DVD's, Ive played it many times, what a concert !!
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Kevin

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2013, 10:37:15 AM »

Most overrated Beatle song ever. It just drags along forever with Eric Clapton getting so much attention for a guitar solo that George himself could have handled very easily. Never liked it.
I'm mostly with you on this one. I think the song really lacks a refrain/bridge/middle 8, so it lacks any kind of climax, stopping it IMO being a Beatle classic.
It is pleasant enough, though the title bugs me. Bit presumptuios as a guitarist to claim to the world that "my guitar gently weeps", especially when on the one Beatle song requiring a solo you have to get your mate in to do it for you. And that mate is about to start banging your wife. My sweet Lord!
Like Tk I don't really rate Claptons solo. A tad ponderous. Should have let McCartney do it.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2013, 01:15:30 PM by Kevin »
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Klang

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2013, 11:32:36 AM »

You were more enlightened than I was in 1968, Klang.    ;D

I don't know how enlightened I was. Probably just more cocksure that I wasn't one of the bad guys.

 :P

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Dcazz

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2013, 11:40:28 AM »

I'm basically with you Kevin. I have always heard this song as Georges musical comentary on how he was always being marginalized by Paul who was doing a large number of the good guitar solos or not even given a part to play in some songs. This may explain why the other two weren't all that interested in playing the song. Shades of Not Guilty! I think George should have reached down inside himself and done the solo even if he shortened it a bit.
I do respect the craftsmanship though. In Blue Jay Way before this he created a sense of interminal waiting while Derk Taylor drove around lost in the fog all night. In WMGGW he effectivly creates the feeling of his saddness over not being included or considered an important partner in the group. I don't know to what point his new philosophies (ego death) were driving his decision to not do the solo but I think he should have. I'm sure Clapton did excactly what George wanted as a guitar lament but it could have been more.
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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2013, 08:44:39 PM »

Great song, great lyrics. I don't really care about the fact that George didn't play the guitar solo, I just care about the music, and Eric's solo is wonderful, just what the song needed. George wasn't such a virtuoso, but he did give us some delicious guitar solos in songs like "Something" and "Let It Be".
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tkitna

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2013, 11:57:38 PM »

I always found it ironic also that if you listen carefully to the song, the harmonies and backgrounds are never in synch with the lead vocals. Its actually quite sloppy to be honest. I guess i'm puzzled as to why this song receives so much attention when George has better offerings. I know its me, but I still have to wonder.

nimrod

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2013, 12:07:25 AM »

I always found it ironic also that if you listen carefully to the song, the harmonies and backgrounds are never in synch with the lead vocals. Its actually quite sloppy to be honest. I guess i'm puzzled as to why this song receives so much attention when George has better offerings. I know its me, but I still have to wonder.

its ok not to like something Todd  ;D
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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2013, 12:54:38 AM »

George wasn't such a virtuoso...

Oh, he was pretty good.
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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2013, 01:00:51 AM »

And that mate is about to start banging your wife. My sweet Lord!




Nice song that Layla, Eric

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Re: Song Of The Week - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2013, 01:18:27 AM »

I always liked this song. I think it has nice music to it and good lyrics.

"I wrote While My Guitar Gently Weeps at my mother's house in Warrington. I was thinking about the Chinese I Ching, the Book of Changes... The Eastern concept is that whatever happens is all meant to be, and that there's no such thing as coincidence - every little item that's going down has a purpose.
While My Guitar Gently Weeps was a simple study based on that theory. I decided to write a song based on the first thing I saw upon opening any book - as it would be a relative to that moment, at that time. I picked up a book at random, opened it, saw 'gently weeps', then laid the book down again and started the song."
The fact that George just picked up a random book and got inspired - annoys me. The song itself seems so real and meaningful so I initially thought Oh wow he has something to say but now it is more like he was bored and just wrote something.

I do like the acoustic version though. My mom's favorite George song too.
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