Music: Letting George Do It

As nearly as a Beatle could, George Harrison led the life of an invisible man. Paul McCartney and John Lennon were hailed as genius pop composers. Ringo Starr, the catalyst who served as a human buffer between conflicting egos, was constantly stirring affectionate chuckles. George was the quiet, apparently dependent one.

Such attention as he got came in oddball ways. In 1965 he created a vogue for raga-rock, by introducing the sitar in Norwegian Wood. It was he who interested the rest of the Beatles in transcendental meditation. For years George lived in a...

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