George Harrison Said That When Artists Copied Each Other’s Sounds It Became ‘Washing-up Liquid’

George Harrison on the set of 'Magical Mystery Tour' in 1967.
George Harrison | Chapman/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

George Harrison thought contemporary music lacked a human feel

During an interview with Anthony DeCurtis, George talked about how he wanted his 1987 album, Cloud Nine, to sound. Luckily, he had Jeff Lynne as his co-producer, and they shared a dislike of pop music. George wanted Cloud Nine to sound like older music.

George Harrison thought that when artists copied each other’s sounds, it came out like “washing-up liquid.” The former Beatle didn’t like all the inhuman sounds that artists used in the recording studio. He wanted his music to sound natural.

“Because personally, although there’s many records that are really good like that, it’s not my favorite sound. I still prefer all the old stuff… I think it’s gone crazy really, with what people can do these days. They just switch on a machine, an emulator, and they hit a button and they’ve got a huge orchestra.

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The former Beatle guessed that the younger generations bought The Beatles’ 1999 reissue of Yellow Submarine because they were sick of their generation’s music and drum machines.

He said fans bought The Beatles’ reissue of ‘Yellow Submarine’ because they were sick of drum machines

George never liked drum machines.

“It’s in those grooves, and it’s boom. Also they’re a bit of light relief after all this drum machine stuff that we’ve been having for the last 15 or 20 years.”

George told Billboard, “I think because it’s the same when people were 9 or 16 back in the ’60s. They liked it then, and they like it now for the same basic reasons: The songs are catchy, they’re fun, and they still have whatever it was then.

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Ultimately, George wasn’t a fan of any contemporary music, much less than the sounds and the drum machines they used. He preferred an unfettered raw sound like his idols had.

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