The Beatles -- ‘Not Guilty’

Take 99 Not Guilty (3.22)

George Harrison: Lead vocal, guitar; John Lennon: Harpsichord; Paul McCartney: Bass guitar; Ringo Starr: Drums;

This was scheduled for a spot on the ‘White Album’ until they inexplicably dumped it after 99 takes. It might possibly have struck a bum note with John and Paul because of the rather bitter lyrics – in the same way that ‘Only A Northern Song’ was dumped from ‘Sgt. Pepper’s’.

George explained: “I said that I wasn’t guilty of leading them astray in all our going to Rishikesh to see the Maharishi.” He also made his increasingly frequent point that his songs had often got a pasting – “Not guilty of getting in your way, while you’re trying to steal the day.”

It was during the recording of this song that George first used his famous cherry-red Gibson – a gift from Eric Clapton. A famous old story says that Clapton gave it to him after playing the solo on ‘While My Guitar …

→  Read more in The Beatles: Day-by-Day, Song-by-Song, Record-by-Record

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