Rig Report

The Guitars of George Harrison

Tone Report looks at the iconic guitars of iconic Beatle George Harrison.

  • By Sarah FitzGerald @tonereport
  • December 20, 2013

An informal poll conducted on my personal Facebook page recently has concluded, definitively if not scientifically, that George Harrison is not only the Best Beatle but also the Greatest Guitarist and possibly even The Most Amazing Human Being of All Time*.  Growing up, all I ever heard about was McCartney or Lennon—but as a grown up? All I ever hear about is Harrison and it’s completely justified. My favorite guitar heroes are the ones who stay as under-the-radar as possible just like George-- quietly devoting himself to music and to his guitars and writing some of what are arguably the finest songs the Beatles ever performed or recorded.  

George never stopped evolving and he was unafraid of change—something that shows even in his choice of instruments over the course of his career.  This week, I’m taking inspiration from George by taking a look at some of his most iconic instruments—legendary guitars that are intrinsic pieces of the Beatles history and remain a ton of fun to learn about.


 *scientifically unproven but I still choose to believe it.

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  1. Bruce

    My favorite George Harrison guitar is the late 60’s rosewood Telecaster because I bought one at that time and still have it in pristine condition in the original Fender hardcase.  It is indeed heavy but quite a sentimental guitar for obvious reasons. American made, just like George’s.  I bought it brand new in 1972 for $400!

  2. Don Wingle

    I’ve always loved the early guitar sounds of George. The Ric tones are to die for! The Gretch models, I’ve never had a chance to play, but, in the beginning years of the band,those sounds were very much a part of the way the band sounded. Towards the ending of days,the guitar didn’t seem to play as big a part in the overall sound of the band.imo. I also think that their Acoustic guitars played a major role in the early days. So many of the rhythm parts were played on the Acoustics. To sum it all up..I loved them dearly,and still do of course,and miss them very much. If it weren’t for the Beatles,I doubt I would have been a guitar player.

  3. bud holloway

    The gretsch country gentlemen because of its iconic look when the Beatles first appeared,but my latest is the duo jet. George evolved as a guitar player just like the Beatles.his initial style was a little choppy but let it be and sometthing leads are the greatest.his slide work cannot be mistaken.