My iPod #45: George Harrison – Any Road

Another George Harrison song.

‘Any Road ‘ was released on George Harrison’s posthumous album ‘Brainwashed’ almost a year after his death from cancer.

It was written during the making of the video for his song ‘This Is Love‘ from ‘Cloud Nine’ in 1988, and continued to work on songs over the next decade.

On 30 December 1999, Harrison and his wife were attacked in their home. Harrison had to be hospitalized after being stabbed multiple times, and underwent treatment for his first bout of cancer in 2001. It was rough times for him. The cancer in his liver then spread to his brain, and after learning that it would be fatal he dedicated more time towards completing the album with his son Dhani and Jeff Lynne of Electric Light Orchestra.

He passed away whilst the album was still being made, but had left enough information for Jeff and Dhani to finish the job.

However bleak the history behind the album may seem, ‘Any Road’ provides a shining light in the tunnel. After a three second introduction by George, (Give me, uh, plenty of that guitar), the song bursts into life with a joyful ukelele and slide guitar licks that pop up here and there after the chorus.

The song is basically Harrison telling us his life story, the things he’s witnessed before him, places he’s been to and how he got there, and of course having such a life to the full like Harrison did you would have no idea whether you were coming or going. It has an ‘Amazing Grace’ type of message, I once was lost but now am found kind of thing, but it’s no preachy thing. In fact, you can tell that Harrison wanted to make this a fun song whilst maintaining a serious and reflective message. Listen to those ‘Arribas’ during the last minute or so, it’s quite heartwarming once you listen to it all.

Rest in peace George Harrison, you were a cool guy.

Until next time.



Author: Jamie Kyei Manteaw

An English student at Coventry University who spends most days listening to music (old and new) and reading and writing about it, however informal it may be. And studying too, obviously.

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