According to some reporters, George Harrison was direct during interviews with The Beatles. They gathered that he was different from his bandmates.
The band often fooled around to get through exhausting, silly interviews with reporters who knew nothing about them. For the most part, George included himself in the fooling around. However, he sometimes let his true nature come through.
When that happened, George’s temperament scared some journalists because they didn’t know how to talk to him. They wanted silly answers to their silly questions, and sometimes George didn’t play along.
Cousin Brucie said George Harrison was more present in interviews than the other Beatles
Radio personality Bruce Morrow, a.k.a. Cousin Brucie, saw George and The Beatles’ true personalities after spending a lot of time with them. In Joshua M. Greene’s Here Comes The Sun: The Spiritual And Musical Journey Of George Harrison, Cousin Brucie said George was more present than the rest of the band.
“Even in those early days,” Cousin Brucie recalled, “George was different from the other three. For example, just before going on stage at Shea Stadium, Paul asked me, ‘What’s going to happen here?’ George wouldn’t verbalize his concerns like that. He would simply study what was going on.
“Some people might look at him and think he was disassociated, that his head was somewhere else, but he struck me as even more present than the others, watching from within and absorbing and thinking about what was going on. He was very aware of his surroundings, planning ahead. He just wasn’t verbal about it.”
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Cousin Brucie said George was always direct during interviews
According to Cousin Brucie, George was always direct during interviews as well. The radio personality said it sometimes made journalists uncomfortable because they feared he’d produce a bland interview or dead air. So, they turned to the other Beatles for answers.
However, if reporters always talked to John or Paul, maybe that’s why George seemed to be the quiet one. They didn’t talk to him, so he adopted a quieter nature during interviews. Then other reporters dubbed him the quiet Beatle.
Cousin Brucie regrets not getting to know George better.
“I remember interviewing them, and in those days, honestly, George wasn’t the most exciting Beatle,” Cousin Brucie explained. “As a journalist, you’d go after John or Paul or Ringo. George’s introspection made us afraid of getting too much of the mortal sin for a broadcaster, namely dead air.
“But in retrospect, that was very wrong. I think now that if we had given George the courtesy and respect he deserved, his whole persona might have changed. But none of us did that. It was the other three who got 90 percent of the action.
“When he was interviewed, George was always direct, never flowery with his words. He answered succinctly. If he could answer in two sentences, he never made it into a paragraph. He had kind eyes. When you spoke with him, he looked directly at you. You knew there was sensitivity at work.
“I remember talking to George in one Beatles interview, and McCartney butts in and asks John, ‘Hey, John, why don’t you tell him who you’re sleeping with now?’ First of all, in those days, you didn’t make those kinds of references on the air. But I remember George looking down. He didn’t say anything, but he looked down as if he was embarrassed or disapproved.
“I don’t know whether it was for me or for what McCartney said, but it did seem that he felt the comment out of line. Maybe their success in America had hit them so quickly that they didn’t always know how to handle it and would sometimes react with nervous energy and get occasionally snippy. But Harrison never was.”
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Another reporter said the Beatle was ‘upfront’
Another radio personality who got to know The Beatles was Murray “the K” Kaufman. The disc jockey spent time with the band during their first trip to the U.S. Like Cousin Brucie, Kaufman thought George was “upfront” during interviews.
“George is a very nitty-gritty person,” the American disc jockey said in the mid-1960s. “When you say something to George, he’d say, ‘Okay, now what do you mean?’ He wants to be very specific. He’s very upfront. He’s very truthful. He will not allow something to go by that he doesn’t know exactly.”
George always wanted to be authentic in interviews. However, sometimes, he’d act like his bandmates instead of himself. It was more interesting when he was himself.
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