Picks and Pans Review: I.me.mine

updated 11/30/1981 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 11/30/1981 AT 01:00 AM EST

by George Harrison

Even modest George refers to the Beatles as "the Fab Four." Now he has produced this curious volume with the help of Derek Taylor, the old Beatles publicist who once ghost-wrote a newspaper column with Harrison's name on it. (The book was first published last year in England in a collectors' edition of 2,000 copies, priced at $350 each.) Harrison comes off as a nice, poorly educated, occasionally troubled young man with some genuine interest in Indian religion and music. The fame and crowds of the Beatle days were frightening, he says, but he did like meeting famous people. Unfortunately, only one such meeting is described in any detail: "Kissinger looked like an Arab, talked like a German and was tanned all over like Clark Gable. He was a bit like Charlie Chaplin..." Oddly enough, Harrison says almost nothing about his fellow Beatles. Harrison's life is described in Liverpool monosyllables, black American jive, showbiz slang and the jargon of Eastern mysticism. He credits his LSD trips with breaking the grip of his troublesome ego (see the title), but while he sat at the feet of the great gurus, he came away with surprisingly little to show for it. Mainly the book gives us the words to all his songs, reproduced in his own handwriting as he first put them down-many on hotel stationery—and an explanation of when and where and how and why he wrote each one of them. In its overall effect, this is a strangely disarming book that may very well exemplify in its patchy way why the Beatles caught our fancy. (Simon and Schuster, $12.95)

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