Album Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Country Blues, Country-Rock, Crossover Jazz, Experimental Rock, Indian Classical, Indian Subcontinent Traditions, Instrumental Pop, Political Folk, Raga, Singer/Songwriter
The Concert for Bangladesh [DVD]
Blues, Easy Listening, Folk, Jazz, Pop, Rock, World
When the Beatles created the first rock videos with their release of "Paperback Writer" and "Rain" were sent to Ed Sullivan to air in place of them actually appearing, a new medium was launched that in 1981 became MTV.
When Ravi Shankar asked for George Harrison's help for a starving nation of then Bangladesh. George reacted by calling upon many of his friends in the music world to pitch in with the first Rock concert turned benefit concert for those less fortunate in Bangladesh. Long before Live Aid, Farm Aid, or Green Concerts. This was the one that started them all.
The first two songs were rightly those of Ravi Shankar himself. You need not be a fan of Indian music to know it led to the World Beat craze years later. Then George Harrison does 3 songs, all of which come from his "All Things Must Pass" album. All of the songs were passionate readings of the originals. "Wah-Wah" especially sounds nice minus the "wall of sound" technic Phil Spector used on the original recording.
Then George shares the spotlight with some of the other musicans who on a moments notice came to play without even being paid. Billy Preston and Ringo Starr give great performances, even with Ringo forgetting a few of the words to "It Don't Come Easy". The only performer that seems dated today is Leon Russell.
George not known as a comfortable stage presence, does know how to pace a concert. The next big moment of the show was his and Eric Claptons performance of "While My Guitar Gently Weeps". Bigger surprises were still in store.
George changes guitars, nervously looking off to the side of the stage, before calling out his surprise "Guest". George says, "I'd like to bring on a friend of us all, Mr. Bob Dylan." The crowd erupts in wild applause and amazement to George's announcement. George even up to the moment he looked off to his right of the stage, didn't know Bob would show. He hadn't been seen live in concert for 3 years.
Bob sings 4 of his many classic songs, 1 of them from his "Blonde on Blonde" classic double disc and another from "Highway 61 Revisisted". George and Ringo back him up on guitar and tambourine throughout.
The concert closes with George retaking the spotlight with "Something" and a great version of "Bangladesh". There are extras that hadn't seen the light of day since they were played that night. "If Not For You" duet by Bob and George. A soundcheck version of "Come on in my Kitchen" with George, Eric Clapton and Leon Russell.
This concert should be seen by all. Especially by people my age who couldn't get tickets and had to read about it in the newspapers the next day. A true historic and magical concert experience.