George Harrison’s estate has released a new mix of All Things Must Pass, bringing a new sonic experience to a song just as relevant in 2020.
50 years ago, George Harrison gave the world a weird and wonderful triple album named All Things Must Pass that would go on to become one of the most prolific solo releases by any Beatles member. It came fresh off the group’s cataclysmic split in 1969.
Today, George Harrison’s estate has released a new mix of its title track, giving the listener a new lens by which to view the song. It pushes Harrison’s vocals to the front, allowing greater attention to be payed to the timeless lyrics.
The album, originally produced by the legendary Phil Spector, featured the dense, layered, and reverberant wall of sound that was be designed to play best on AM radio. Years on, Harrison would become resentful of his choice to opt for such a highly produced sound, which he described as “a bit over the top”.
Harrison’s son Dhani shared on re-releasing the song:
“Making this album sound clearer was always one of my dad’s greatest wishes and it was something we were working on together right up until he passed. But with the help of new technology and the work of Paul Hicks on this project, we are now able to make that happen. We can’t wait for you all to hear everything we’ve been working on.”
Paul Hicks has been enlisted for the reissuing of past Beatles and John Lennon albums, and was chosen by the Harrison estate to work on All Things Must Pass. The remix would not attempt to completely override Spector’s influence and musicality, but achieve an airier and cleaner sound, giving space for Harrison’s messages of wisdom to shine through.
The song is a true representation of Harrison as a person, who shot to fame somewhat stifled by the egos of those surrounding him. Despite being referred to as ‘the quiet Beatle’ and less affectionately by band mate John Lennon as ‘Skeleton George,’ Harrison truely floated with the wind, and lived the idea that there is no end, only beginnings.
“Sunset doesn’t last all evening, a mind can blow those clouds away
After all this my love is up, and must be leaving
But it’s not always going to be this grey”
Harrison’s record was a deeply intimate reflection of his life and All Things Must Pass was just as personal as the artists he chose to play with on it. They were longtime friends like Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, and Klaus Voormann, who also played bass on some of Lennon’s works.
Voormann said that while Lennon worked quickly, “George took his time, he got comfortable. He made a little altar. He made the studio into his little home. He knew what he wanted. We would just listen and play our parts, and hardly ever would George say, ‘I don’t like this'”.
Harrison’s son Dhani announced that there is more reworks to come, saying, “The new stereo mix of the album’s title track is just a taste of more things to come in 2021 as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of my father’s legendary All Things Must Pass album.”