What would have been the 75th birthday of George Harrison on 25 February will be marked by the release in multiple formats, two days earlier, of the Grammy-winning, eight-times platinum set Concert For George.
This opulent record of the event held in George’s honour at London’s Royal Albert Hall on 29 November 2002, a year after his passing, will be available via Concord Music as a 4-LP box set and a limited edition deluxe 10-disc box set. The new release will mark the first time the set has been available on vinyl, or on streaming services.
“We will always celebrate George’s birthday,” says Olivia Harrison, “and this year we are releasing Concert for George in a very special package in memory of a special man.”
The concert film, directed by David Leland, won a Grammy Award in 2004 for Best Long Form Music Video. Like the audio releases, it captures unforgettable performances of George’s timeless compositions by such friends and admirers as Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne, Billy Preston, Ravi and Anoushka Shankar, George’s son Dhani and many more (photographs by Richard Young © Oops Publishing Ltd).
The deluxe box set, a limited edition of 1000 pieces worldwide, features the complete sound and film recordings from the concert on four 180-gram audiophile LPs, 2 CDs, 2 DVDs and 2 Blu-rays. It also offers a 12” x 12” hard-bound 60-page book and the unique opportunity to own a piece of the historic, all-star concert, with a cutting from the original hand-painted on-stage tapestry that was used as the backdrop for the event.
The box set is housed in a gold-coloured, fabric-wrapped box with a die-cut mandala window to display the unique stage fabric, which is mounted on an individually numbered card, suitable for framing. Included in the package is a note from Olivia Harrison, explaining the story behind the tapestry.
The 4-LP box set edition includes the complete sound recordings from the concert on 180-gram audiophile vinyl, with a mandala design etched on side 8 of the discs. This is the first time that all songs from the performance have been available in an audio format. The album as available via streaming platforms will mirror the track listing of the vinyl.
The 2-CD set features sound recordings from the concert, while the 2-disc DVD and Blu-ray sets also include the complete filmed concert on the first disc and a second containing the original theatrical version, with concert highlights, performer interviews, rehearsals and behind-the-scenes footage. Exclusively on the Blu-ray format, the second disc includes an interview segment titled Drummers, featuring Ringo Starr, Jim Keltner and Ray Cooper.
Concert For George is released on 23 February 2018. Pre-order it here.