All Things Must Pass

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All Things Must Pass is the third studio album by English rock musician George Harrison.

Released as a first triple album in November 1970, it was Harrison's first solo work after the break-up of the Beatles in April that year. It includes the hit singles "My Sweet Lord" and "What Is Life", as well as songs such as "Isn't It a Pity" and the title track that had been overlooked for inclusion on releases by the Beatles. The album reflects the influence of Harrison's musical activities with artists such as Bob Dylan, the Band, Delaney & Bonnie and Friends and Billy Preston during 1968–70, and his growth as an artist beyond his supporting role to former bandmates John Lennon and Paul McCartney. All Things Must Pass introduced Harrison's signature slide guitar sound and the spiritual themes present throughout his subsequent solo work. The original vinyl release consisted of two LPs of songs and a third disc of informal jams titled Apple Jam. Several commentators interpret Barry Feinstein's album cover photo, showing Harrison surrounded by four garden gnomes, as a statement on his independence from the Beatles.

Production began at London's EMI Studios in May 1970, with extensive overdubbing and mixing continuing through October. Among the large cast of backing musicians were Eric Clapton and members of Delaney & Bonnie's Friends band – three of whom formed Derek and the Dominos with Clapton during the recording – as well as Ringo Starr, Gary Wright, Billy Preston, Klaus Voormann, John Barham, Badfinger and Pete Drake. The sessions produced a double album's worth of extra material, most of which remains unissued.

All Things Must Pass was critically and commercially successful on release, with long stays at number one on charts worldwide. Co-producer Phil Spector employed his Wall of Sound production technique to notable effect; Ben Gerson of Rolling Stone described the sound as "Wagnerian, Brucknerian, the music of mountain tops and vast horizons". Reflecting the widespread surprise at the assuredness of Harrison's post-Beatles debut, Melody Maker's Richard Williams likened the album to Greta Garbo's first role in a talking picture and declared: "Garbo talks! – Harrison is free!" According to Colin Larkin, writing in the 2011 edition of his Encyclopedia of Popular MusicAll Things Must Pass is "generally rated" as the best of all the former Beatles' solo albums.

During the final year of his life, Harrison oversaw a successful reissue campaign to mark the 30th anniversary of the album's release. After this reissue, the Recording Industry Association of America certified the album six-times platinum. Among its appearances on critics' best-album lists, All Things Must Pass was ranked 79th on The Times' "The 100 Best Albums of All Time" in 1993, while Rolling Stone placed it 368th on the magazine's 2020 update of "The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time". In 2014, All Things Must Pass was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.


The following musicians are either credited on the 2001 reissue of All Things Must Pass or are acknowledged as having contributed after subsequent research:

  • George Harrison – vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, dobro, harmonica, Moog synthesizer, harmonium, backing vocals; bass guitar (2001 reissue only)
  • Eric Clapton – electric and acoustic guitars, backing vocals
  • Gary Wright – piano, organ, electric piano
  • Bobby Whitlock – organ, harmonium, piano, tubular bells, backing vocals
  • Klaus Voormann – bass guitar, electric guitar
  • Jim Gordon – drums
  • Carl Radle – bass guitar
  • Ringo Starr – drums, percussion
  • Billy Preston – organ, piano
  • Jim Price – trumpet, trombone
  • Bobby Keys – saxophones
  • Alan White – drums, vibraphone
  • Pete Drake – pedal steel
  • John Barham – orchestral arrangements, choral arrangement, harmonium, vibraphone
  • Pete Ham – acoustic guitar
  • Tom Evans – acoustic guitar
  • Joey Molland – acoustic guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – percussion
  • Peter Frampton – acoustic guitar
  • Dave Mason – electric and acoustic guitars
  • Tony Ashton – piano
  • Gary Brooker – piano
  • Mal Evans – percussion, vocal on "It's Johnny's Birthday", "tea and sympathy"
  • Ginger Baker – drums on "I Remember Jeep"
  • John Lennon – handclaps on "I Remember Jeep"
  • Yoko Ono – handclaps on "I Remember Jeep"
  • Al Aronowitz – unspecified contribution on "Out of the Blue"
  • Eddie Klein – vocal on "It's Johnny's Birthday"
  • Dhani Harrison – acoustic guitar, electric piano, backing vocals (2001 reissue only)
  • Sam Brown – vocals, backing vocals (2001 reissue only)
  • Ray Cooper – percussion, synthesizer (2001 reissue only)


Music journalist John Harris said George Harrison's "journey" to making All Things Must Pass started when he visited America in late 1968, after the acrimonious sessions for the Beatles' self-titled double album (also known as the "White Album"). At Woodstock in November, Harrison started a long-lasting friendship with Bob Dylan and experienced a creative equality with the Band that contrasted with John Lennon and Paul McCartney's dominance in the Beatles. He also wrote more songs, renewing his interest in the guitar after three years studying the Indian sitar. As well as being one of the few musicians to co-write songs with Dylan, Harrison had recently collaborated with Eric Clapton on "Badge", which became a hit single for Cream in the spring of 1969.

Once back in London, and with his compositions continually overlooked for inclusion on releases by the Beatles, Harrison found creative fulfilment in extracurricular projects that, in the words of his musical biographer, Simon Leng, served as an "emancipating force" from the restrictions imposed on him in the band. His activities during 1969 included producing Apple signings Billy Preston and Doris Troy, two American singer-songwriters whose soul and gospel roots proved as influential on All Things Must Pass as the music of the Band. He also recorded with artists such as Leon Russell and Jack Bruce, and accompanied Clapton on a short tour with Delaney Bramlett's soul revue, Delaney & Bonnie and Friends. In addition, Harrison identified his involvement with the Hare Krishna movement as providing "another piece of a jigsaw puzzle" that represented the spiritual journey he had begun in 1966. As well as embracing the Vaishnavist branch of Hinduism, Harrison produced two hit singles during 1969–70 by the UK-based devotees, credited as Radha Krishna Temple (London). In January 1970, Harrison invited American producer Phil Spector to participate in the recording of Lennon's Plastic Ono Band single "Instant Karma!" This association led to Spector being given the task of salvaging the Beatles' Get Back rehearsal tapes, released officially as the Let It Be album (1970), and later co-producing All Things Must Pass.

Harrison first discussed the possibility of making a solo album of his unused songs during the ill-tempered Get Back sessions, held at Twickenham Film Studios in January 1969. On 25 February, his 26th birthday, Harrison recorded demos of "All Things Must Pass" and two other compositions that had received little interest from Lennon and McCartney at Twickenham. With the inclusion of one of these songs – "Something" – and "Here Comes the Sun" on the Beatles' Abbey Road album in September 1969, music critics acknowledged that Harrison had bloomed into a songwriter to match Lennon and McCartney. He began talking publicly about recording his own album from the autumn of 1969, but only committed to the idea after McCartney announced that he was leaving the Beatles in April 1970. Included as part of the promotional material for McCartney's self-titled solo album, this announcement signalled the band's break-up. Despite having already made Wonderwall Music (1968), a mostly instrumental soundtrack album, and the experimental Electronic Sound (1969), Harrison considered All Things Must Pass to be his first solo album.

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    Name Born / Since / At Died Languages
    1Billy PrestonBilly Preston02.09.194606.06.2006de, en, fr, lv, pl, ru
    2Gary BrookerGary Brooker29.05.194519.02.2022de, en, fr, lv, pl, ru
    3Bobby KeysBobby Keys18.12.194302.12.2014de, en, fr, lv, ru
    4George HarrisonGeorge Harrison25.02.194329.11.2001de, en, fr, lt, lv, pl, ru, ua
    5John LennonJohn Lennon09.10.194008.12.1980ee, en, fr, lt, lv, pl, ru, ua
    6Ginger  BakerGinger Baker19.08.193906.10.2019de, en, fr, lv, pl, ru