5 Songs You Didn’t Know George Harrison Wrote for the Beatles

It must have been tough at times for George Harrison. To be in a band with the likes of Paul McCartney and John Lennon—that’s like being an All-Star athlete but sitting behind Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, Kobe and Shaq.

But despite that situation, Harrison was able to write more songs that fans might remember for the Beatles. Many of the tracks he wrote became some of the group’s biggest hits. These are five songs you likely didn’t know Harrison wrote for the Beatles.

Before the Beatles were the Beatles, they were the Quarrymen. That band consisted of McCartney, Lennon and Harrison, along with piano player John Lowe and drummer Colin Hanton (no Ringo Starr). This song was the first the group recorded. It was written by McCartney and Harrison, who penned the lyrics and guitar solo, respectively. It was released in the summer of 1958 and in the song, Paul sings,

Released on the Beatles’ 1969 LP, Abbey Road, this song was written solely by Harrison. He penned the tune at Eric Clapton’s house while playing hooky from the Beatles, not wanting to go to a meeting with Apple Records. In some ways, this was the first breakout song for Harrison as a principal writer for the band, though that role was played by him only in spurts.

“‘Here Comes the Sun’ was written at the time when Apple was getting like school, where we had to go and be businessmen: ‘Sign this’ and ‘sign that,’”Harrison wrote in his memoir I, Me, Mine of the songwriting process for the tune. “Anyway, it seems as if winter in England goes on forever, by the time spring comes you really deserve it. So one day I decided I was going to sag off Apple and I went over to Eric Clapton’s house. The relief of not having to go see all those dopey accountants was wonderful, and I walked around the garden with one of Eric’s acoustic guitars and wrote ‘Here Comes the Sun.’”

On the song, he sings to open the lovely, lilting track,

Released on the band’s 1966 album, Revolver, this song was written by Harrison, with a little help from Lennon on the lyrics even though it is credited to Harrison alone. As the title suggests, the song is one of protest against the U.K. government, which took an exorbitant portion of the Beatles earnings. This was Harrison’s first big nod as a songwriter for the band, as the track opened the LP, making a big statement with its sharp electric guitar sounds. Sings Harrison,

This is perhaps Harrison’s most famous song he wrote for the Fab Four. Released on the 1970 album, Let It Be, “I Me Mine” is about consumerism and selfishness. It was also written a time of great tumult for the band, which was on the brink of breaking up—or, losing the sense of the group for the sense of the individual. Fans can watch the 2021 documentary, The Beatles: Let It Be, and see when Harrison brought the song to the group (as Lennon waltzed around with wife Yoko Ono). In the finished version, Harrison sings,

Released on the group’s 1965 album, Help!, this song is an acoustic and piano-driven offering from the band, more rudimentary blues-rock than the group’s later offerings. It’s a rather simple love song, closer to “I Want to Hold Your Hand” than The White Album. On the ditty, Harrison sings,

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