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Apr. 14th, 2007 @ 10:59 am Rant #16
Ok, again, because you guys have asked for it, WHY I DON'T LIKE GEORGE!

I will try to be sensible & level-headed, but no promises, so if you *DO* like George, I'd advise against you not reading any further, as you will most likely only get pissed off. Don't say I didn't warn you...

I haven't always disliked George (notice I didn't use the word hate, because I feel that's far too strong a sentiment in this case). In fact many many many years ago I liked him a lot! Outwardly he seemed nice enough, and he was adorable on stage, and I still like his voice when it's untouched by all the weird special effects he and John started using in their later years. But I suppose as the years went on, and I read more and more books about The Beatles, and I started observing the way George behaved IRL, I started to kind of not like him as much. I started to lose respect for him as a person, and I eventually, I found him to be, basically, a grumpy old man who was once a grumpy young man. Then he died, and I realized how sad it made me (yeah, I cried my little head off, but thankfully my hubby was there to comfort me), so I figured, he can't have been that bad, right?

And he's not. I just personally do have some issues with him, and there are things about him that really bother me. I also have to be honest in saying part of the problem that I have with him recently is his rabid/obsessed fans who refuse to hear a bad thing about him AND they deify him. I've got no qualms with George being someone's favorite, but what I do have a problem with is blind devotion (as my past rants have clearly shown). I guess I'm just tired of people not thinking. But I digress....

So, my biggest problem with George is that I just don't like him as a person. I find him to be, on the whole, grumpy, caustic, rude, scheming, jealous, ungrateful, and I feel that his constant negative attitude really brought the band down. The same goes for his snide, back handed, subversive comments.

And it's not just about George; I don't personally like negative, manipulative people in general. And I really REALLY have problems with people who complain about their situation in life and do nothing to change it. George had a sign in his gate that said "FUCK OFF" in about 10 different languages. Yeah, I know he wanted his privacy, and probably deserved it, but he could have left The Beatles back in 1965 when he decided he hated touring and I bet his fame would not have been nearly as bad as it became in later years, but he still could have easily lived off the money from their first few albums royalties without working another day. In fact, after their last concert in 1966 he even said "That's it, I'm not a Beatle anymore." So, if he disliked being a Beatle so badly, why didn't he just quit? I know he liked the music aspect of it, but even then for the last couple years, he seemed to get very bitter and jealous towards John and Paul about it all, and not really enjoy it as much.

I guess I just feel like, expecially after they stopped touring, if George hated it so much, he should have just left, instead of poisoning the group with his bitterness. And let's face it, as a studio musician he was not that stellar and, per John's suggestion during the "Let it be" sessions when George stormed out, could have easily been replaced.

Now before you all go bat-shit crazy on me and say, much like Paul did, "It's not The Beatles without George!" let me explain. I think (now remember, this is just my opinion), that George was the most expendable of The Beatles. Honestly, what did he bring to the table? John and Paul obviously brought the majority (and in my opinion the best) music. Ringo was the heart and the glue especially there towards the end. George? A bunch of shitty Indian music (just my opinion), and some weak lead guitar work...so weak in fact that often George M. covered up his solos with piano bits or Paul or John did the lead guitar on the recordings. He just was not that great of a studio muscician, nor was he a genius on the guitar (though I will admit he got a lot better towards the end). There is nothing masterful about how he plays (my opinion), and I think he could have easily been replaced, or not replaced by an outsider at all. If they were no longer touring, Paul and John could easily have picked up all his guitar duties without a second thought, and The Beatles would have just continued going on one member short. This is not to say that George was not methodical and didn't try very hard and practice a whole lot, or that he was bad at guitar, all I'm saying is that in my opinion he was not 'irreplaceable.'

Another big thing I really don't like about George is how he treated/viewed the fans. Yeah, OK, I can see how people hanging about your gate (and trying to stab you) can be annoying, but is a sign that says "Fuck Off" really necessary? It all ties back to the whole fame thing above. He seemed to really enjoy the money he made off of us, but then got annoyed by all the attention. So either he was just a whiney/grumpy person in general or he was a hypocrite who loved the benefits of fame but refused to accept the bad aspects of it. Come on, even a kid knows that consequences follow every choice you make, good or bad.

The rest of it all is just incedentals, and doesn't really affect my opinion of him as a person. So, much as I would like to rant about it, I don't think the fact that I don't like the majority of his music, or that I think he has bad teeth really has any place here in this particular rant. Also, you don't need to go and point out to me (by way of defense) what a great sense of humor he had or how great "The Life of Brian" is. I know all that, and I agree. This particular rant is just my personal opinion of why I don't like him as a person, so please don't set out to try to make me love George, because I can tell you, it ain't gonna happen!

So, I will just close with one teensy little irrational thing that really bugs me about George: I HATE that he refused to do the 3rd and last new single for The Anthologies. I think it was mean-sprited and selfish of him to do so. It seriously bugs me.
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macca
abromeds:
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From:chester_bnngton
Date:April 19th, 2007 05:24 pm (UTC)
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Seriously, I don't know why I always thought it was you xD... I'm a psychic *LOL*.....

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From:queenpeladon
Date:April 14th, 2007 06:57 pm (UTC)
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I'm very glad to see you did this!

You know I've recently been disillusioned with George as well, so I can only sadly agree with a lot of your criticisms with regards to his flaws. All the Beatles had flaws, but George's flaws grate against me the most, for some reason. There are also reasons I personally dislike him that you didn't even touch on! LOL

"George had a sign in his gate that said "FUCK OFF" in about 10 different languages."

This is news to me. How very depressing.

However, I must disagree with your opinion that he brought the least to the table, or that his contributions were the weakest. You know I'm a big fan of the majority his Beatles songs, I adore his Indian music and think he was actually irreplacable. Ringo may have been a great guy who did a lot to hold the band together when they were wobbling, but this is also the guy who stormed out in a strop when the going got tough and had to be placated and flattered into returning, and frankly, he was just a skilful drummer, and those are ten a penny. Whereas George had a unique sound and a unique songwriting style.

"So, I will just close with one teensy little irrational thing that really bugs me about George: I HATE that he refused to do the 3rd and last new single for The Anthologies. I think it was mean-sprited and selfish of him to do so. It seriously bugs me."

I can understand why you're saddened by this, but I completely support George's decision not to get involved with any Beatles project. Doing any of the Anthology singles was generous enough in my view, and I'm grateful for what we got - he quit the Beatles 35 years ago, he has no obligation to go back to them. Would you really want to return to a job you quit, particularly a job you grew to absolutely loathe by the end? At the end of the day, being in a band is just a job, like anything else.
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From:queenpeladon
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:00 pm (UTC)
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P.S. Whoops, I slipped into that old "talking about dead Beatles in the present tense" trap in that comment. :(
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From:adaveen
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:22 pm (UTC)
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I agree with everything except that he was expendable. Although he WASN'T the best musician of the lot, and certainly not the BEST songwriter, he certainly did lend a very distinctive sound to the Beatles from the beginning. This sound was carried into his sitar music, and although I'm not a fan of Indian music, I do know that one of my top favorite Beatles songs would not SOUND like that without George's sitar.

And as far as a member of the group, although by himself he was a grumpy, ungrateful, self-righteous twit, I think he provided a good balance with the Half-Crazed Wit, Mr. Perfect, and Hollywood Affable. After all, would it really BE the 7 Dwarfs without Grumpy?

Since I've been aware of George, I've gotten the impression that the self-righteous silliness was his way of lending meaning to the insanity that was his life. And that he didn't so much HATE being a Beatle as much as he came to hate it more and more as he saw how much of his life, privacy and sense of peace it infringed on. I can forgive him for that, because well - it WAS an enormous amount of insanity.

I still think the most brilliant thing George ever wrote was "This Song".
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From:lildevilgirl06
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:29 pm (UTC)
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After all, would it really BE the 7 Dwarfs without Grumpy? ahahah

I think the other three fill the six other personalities ahah
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From:geminigirl58
Date:April 14th, 2007 10:15 pm (UTC)
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And as far as a member of the group, although by himself he was a grumpy, ungrateful, self-righteous twit, I think he provided a good balance with the Half-Crazed Wit, Mr. Perfect, and Hollywood Affable. After all, would it really BE the 7 Dwarfs without Grumpy?

*laughs*. Well said! Wasn't the talk about the alchemy, the balance between all four? The worst or most grating traits of each were cancelled out/held down by characteristics of the others.
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From:pauls_left_hand
Date:April 16th, 2007 09:24 pm (UTC)
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After all, would it really BE the 7 Dwarfs without Grumpy?

Ok, I give you that. That is the only good point made in defence of George so far.
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From:lildevilgirl06
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:27 pm (UTC)
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I agree with you. Actually, a few years ago my friends and I did "Abbey Road" for Halloween and my friend was George, and the odd thing is after Halloween I realized how much she ACTED like George and lets just say we're not the best of friends now. But the two who were suppose to be Ringo and Paul are my best friends still :/. Just an odd tidbit.

So what that whole story was about is the way I think about the Beatles is basically 'Would I get along with them?' and John with all his faults and weirdness I think I could still get along with him, though I'd have to have some distance every once in a while, Pauls faults I don't mind because I have the perfectionist gene myself, and Ringo is just Ringo and I love him, but George (as I pointed out in my little story) I don't think I could be in the same room with without screaming at him. But I don't HATE George or my friend, I just get easily irritated with them.
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From:queenpeladon
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:30 pm (UTC)
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It's interesting to imagine how well you'd get on with each of them, isn't it? I can't imagine getting on with Paul on anything other than a completely superficial basis - I think he'd just wind me up.
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From:zyzzybalubah
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:38 pm (UTC)
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I honestly don't think that George contributed very much musically to the Beatles (at least not until The White Album & Abbey Road). However, his personality (along with Ringo's) was very important in making the band what it was. There is a lot to be said for charisma. I mean, Eric Clapton was certainly a much better guitarist than George but he has about all the wit and charm of a moldy rock. Just like Pete Best was not really a bad drummer, the other fabs just didn't really like him and he didn't fit in so they got Ringo because his sense of humor and personality jived well with the others.

Eventhough George was very bitchy and snooty, I have to say that I enjoy his interview sessions in the Anthology much more than Paul's. It seems like George is being much more honest (although sarcastic) than Paul, who seems to always be trying to rewrite history and gloss over his own faults.
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From:queenpeladon
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:47 pm (UTC)
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"It seems like George is being much more honest (although sarcastic) than Paul, who seems to always be trying to rewrite history and gloss over his own faults."

You make a damn good point there. Paul's glossy, showbiz, PR-perfect persona has always got right up my nose - I can see you being economical with the truth there, McCartney!

Your comment about Eric Clapton gave me a chuckle as well :)
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From:my_belle_
Date:April 14th, 2007 07:52 pm (UTC)
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I definately understand your reasons for disliking George. The more I learn about him the more I wonder why I like him so...but then I realize I like him for his part in the group-not for what he is alone. Does that make any sense? I think his being in the band was vital to their success, whether he was disruptive or manipulative or nasty or whatever. I also don't think he was replaceable, and though I have no real knowledge base to really speak of his musical abilities I have to say with George's foray into various musical instruments I don't think he was expendable. The addition of his citar (sp?) on Norwegian Wood wouldn't have been there had there been no George and no Indian influence...hell, there may have never even been a "Norwegian Wood" or a "Rubber Soul" album had George been replaced. It's impossible for us to know how much of the real success of the group had to do with George or not, but I wouldn't be willing to find out! :)

*I feel like this makes no sense*

Anyway...I really am happy to hear you say that you like most of his music regardless of disliking the person he was. I think that's an important distinction.

The more I learn about ALL the Beatles, the less I like any of them IRL. But still I find think Georgie is the cutest and I think I'll always hold him special in my heart as he was my "first favorite". :P
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From:lildevilgirl06
Date:April 14th, 2007 08:27 pm (UTC)
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Well since John wrote "Norwegian Wood" there'd be the song just no sitar, unless John or Paul took it up, but there'd probably still be "Rubber Soul"
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From:lildevilgirl06
Date:April 15th, 2007 06:11 am (UTC)
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I'm commenting again! Man, I'm such a loser. Anyway.. My Mom and I have arguments about George a lot mostly because I'll mention how he irritates me without really saying why (mostly because it'll be something I'm reading that she wouldn't understand) and she likes him so she sticks up for him, and it's just a vicious cycle.
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From:minds_opaque
Date:April 15th, 2007 06:59 pm (UTC)
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Why didn't George leave if he hated it so much, you ask?

First and foremost because, as much as he complained and wanted to get out of the Beatles sometimes, he loved the other Beatles and didn't want to leave them. He loved playing music with them, too (watch some of the old films of their concerts and you'll see that), and how else could he play with them all the time?

In other words, I don't think he completely hated the Beatles. But there was a lot to complain about. And while it was Paul's style to suck it up and flash a smile, George liked to complain. I have to agree with adaveen, that was his coping method. If he had the internet then, he'd go on livejournal and blog about the downside of being a Beatle. (And really, how different would that be from how a lot of perfectly ordinary people write their livejournals? :-D Not anyone in this community, of course. But you know what I mean: complaining is normal and we all do it, and we certainly would if we lived the Beatles' lives on tour.) If the others could live with George's grumpiness, and if it helped him get through the insane pressure of the Beatles, then what's the big deal? Obviously that wasn't true during the breakup, when none of them felt like tolerating each other's faults any more, but in 1964/65, I really don't think George complaining a lot bothered the others that much. After all, they could join in and say, "Yeah, I know, and you know what else is annoying?" And then they could have their complaint-fest and go out and flash their smiles again. There's something to be said for that. It probably helped keep them sane.
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From:minds_opaque
Date:April 15th, 2007 07:19 pm (UTC)
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I also have to be honest in saying part of the problem that I have with him recently is his rabid/obsessed fans who refuse to hear a bad thing about him AND they deify him.

Fans who do that about anyone bother me, too. Seriously, people. Learn to think! But I don't think you can blame someone for their rabid fans. Lots of famous people have crazy fans, and they're not responsible for the fact that their fans deify them. Those fans are looking for someone to deify, and if it weren't George, it would be someone else. And I can guarantee you, he wouldn't encourage that sort of blind worship. He'd tell them to go get opinions of their own.
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From:pauls_left_hand
Date:April 16th, 2007 09:19 pm (UTC)
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Hear! Hear!

That bloody sign has always pissed me off. When I first saw it as a kid, George was still one of my heroes, as they all were, it was my first real taste of disappointment as I realised he was just like every other grumpy old grown-up. No different than my neighbour who used to spank us if we forgot to shut his gate; no different than the misery guts who had a case of the screamin' habjabs whenever we ate the flowers on his green beans and no better than all the boring old men who moaned about 'music today'. Which he did and pisses me off almost as much as the gnomes in his garden that he named after Paul (and I think John, but I can't remember and it's nearly my bedtime so I can't look up), so that he could go out and take a leak all over them. He was a dirty, grumpy old man. And he wasn't even old.

As for the Anthology thing. I don't care what he says about it not being good enough for release. It wasn't about that. Paul was his friend and maybe, just maybe, he needed to do it.

George. I consign you to Room 101.

Harumph. Now I'm all hot and bothered.
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From:adaveen
Date:April 16th, 2007 09:45 pm (UTC)
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*** SINGS ***

Mean Mister Mustard sleeps in the park
Shaves in the dark trying to save paper
Sleeps in a hole in the road
Saving up to buy some clothes
Keeps a ten-bob note up his nose
Such a mean old man
Such a mean old man


They were talking about YOU George!!!!


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From:pauls_left_hand
Date:April 16th, 2007 09:36 pm (UTC)
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And as for that sodding sitar!
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From:chester_bnngton
Date:April 19th, 2007 05:29 pm (UTC)
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You HAVE TO LOVE GEORGE *shakes hand* hahahaha I'm kidding, and I know what you mean, when I started liking the Beatles, he was my second favourite until Paul shoved himself in that place (and I'm not complaining xD). I quite like George's songs, as a Beatle and solo career, I truly like his music, I'm not a fan of his Indian music, but it doesn't bother me to listen to it once in a while. And yup, his bitterness and grumpy mood makes me sad sometimes, 'cause when I watch the videos it's like everything was just so perfect and then you read something that shows you his real side, the image of that smiling happy boy goes a away and for me, that I love him and after all I'm his fan.... is sad!...

For my own good, I try to find a coherent reasons of why he was like that.... so I live in a balance of the good/bad/ugly/happy things of George hehe.