by Barry McCollum

In some ways George was the luckiest Beatle.

Unburdened by the weight of being the main songwriter for the group, his talent was allowed to grow and evolve naturally, at a pace which wasn't dictated by the pressures of record industry deadlines and professional commitments.

Neither was he the focal point of the band. George enjoyed the luxury of being a supporting player, contributing as needed, otherwise stepping back to observe and learn. Without the multiple duties of songwriter, singer, musician, spokesman, etc., he was given the enviable opportunity to concentrate on his craft, building exquisite guitar solos on the framework of John and Paul's melodies.

Many don't realize George was as witty as John, as cerebral and deep-thinking. Paul could display an "artsy" cleverness, but his dalliances with "culture" ultimately seemed shallow exercises, attempts to compete with perceived intellectuals.

George's artfulness arose from a spirituality not only manifested in his embrace of Eastern religion, but also in all aspects of his personal life. He lived as if his life was an exercise in creativity and spiritual self-awareness.

We were all lucky to have experienced it with him, for George's growth as a human being was a catalyst for ours too. Perhaps now he's achieved the kind of perfection of spirit he sought in life. If so, remember George's spirit and consider him, and yourself, lucky.

2001 by Barry McCollum
2 January, 2002

Ottawa Beatles Site