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stars tribute to George Harrison...
George Harrison "knew that his place in popular
culture was absolutely secure," Bob Geldof
said of the former Beatle who lost his battle against
cancer on November 29 aged 58.
was one of the first stars to react to Harrison's
untimely death. Upon the announcement of his passing,
tributes poured in, including from key Irish figures.
A frequent visitor to Ireland, "George had his Irish
roots," Prime Minister Bertie Ahern pointed
out at the Anglo-Irish summit in Dublin.
as his British counterpart Tony Blair said,
"The generation of Bertie and myself, we grew up with
Sir Paul McCartney's "baby brother", the second
Beatle to die after John Lennon was killed
in 1980, influenced many generations, such as that
of the Boomtown Rats and U2.
Bob Geldof remembers his first encounter with one
of rock's legendary figures. "I remember when the
Boomtown Rats started he came to see us in Oxford
and I was shocked and stunned when he walked into
the room: There was a living Beatle."
also expressed appreciation for Harrison's musical
talent. "There was a certain mysterious and unknowable
quality about his music which made him a very attractive
figure and gave a whole new dimension to the Beatles."
At their concert in Atlanta, Georgia on Friday (November
30), U2 paid tribute to the great late ex-Beatle by
covering one of his most popular songs, 'My Sweet
Lord', and dedicating their song 'Kite' to him, which
contains the line "I know that this is not goodbye".
"quiet" Beatle, as he was dubbed by many for he avoided
the spotlight, "was curmudgeonly about the fame thing.
But he was very gentle," said Geldof.
An unlikely rock icon, yet he was one. Not only was
he the guitarist of the band which shaped rock 'n
roll, but he also pioneered the idea of rock charity
fundraisers. His highly successful 1971 charity concert
for Bangladesh, the first major fundraiser, prompted
Geldof to ask him for advice while organising Live
Aid in 1985. "I remember him with a profound sense
of gratitude, " Geldof recalls. "As he said himself,
how do you compare with the genius of John and Paul,
but he did, very well. All the way back he measured
up. Maybe because of the necessary competition between
the other two his standard of songwriting was incomparably
better than lots of their contemporaries anyway."
much of Harrison's musical talent was overshadowed
by the Lennon-McCartney songwriting duo, he wrote
many of the Fab Four's top hits - 'Here Comes the
Sun', 'Something' and 'While My Guitar Gently Weeps'
to name but a few - before embarking on a successful
solo career with his trademark guitar lines.
doubts that there's anyone who "can't remember each
one of his guitar lines."
Harrison was a musician, a philanthropist and a mystic.
His last words were, unsurprisingly, "Love one another."