The Light That Has Lighted The World – George Harrison (1973) 24/96 FLAC HD Video ~MetalGuruMessiah~
“The Light That Has Lighted The World” was released on George Harrison’s fourth studio album, Living In The Material World, in the spring of 1973. I love every song on Living In The Material World, but “The Light That Has Lighted The World” may be my very favorite.
*Including the section of Wiki information that details how highly acclaimed this track is with many critics….just in case it’s greatness doesn’t hit you like a ton of bricks….read about it!
The song is viewed as a statement on Harrison’s discomfort with the attention afforded him as an ex-Beatle and features a prominent contribution from English session pianist Nicky Hopkins, along with a highly regarded slide guitar solo from Harrison.
“The Light That Has Lighted the World” is underpinned by Gary Wright’s stately harmonium and Harrison’s acoustic rhythm guitars, and is dominated by Hopkins’ piano. The instrumental section, in between the two verses, featuring first Hopkins and then Harrison, has received much positive comment.
Beatles biographer Alan Clayson also compliments Harrison’s slide-guitar work, writing of his “controlled grace” while “shining up the octaves” during the solo. Another biographer, Elliot Huntley, approves of the “grandiloquent ballad tone” of this and other songs on the album, and admires the “tasteful” rhythm section on “The Light That Has Lighted the World” and Harrison’s “jangling” acoustic guitars. Having interviewed Harrison for Guitar World magazine in 1987, Rip Rense has likened the guitar solo to that on the Beatles’ “Fixing a Hole”, as examples of how Harrison’s solos display “structure, syntax, and development” over “pyrotechnic flourishes”. Rense adds: “These are thoughtful and original, deceptively simple sounding, invested with feeling.” Writing for Goldmine in January 2002, Dave Thompson rated “The Light That Has Lighted the World” an “unquestioned highlight” and “a song hallmarked by distinct echoes of Lennon’s Imagine”.
In his review of the 2006 reissue of Living in the Material World, for Q magazine, Tom Doyle included the song among the album’s best three tracks and wrote: “the introspective moods of The Light That Has Lighted The World and Who Can See It, with their ornate instrumentation and weepy vocals, are lovely things.” Reviewing the 2014 Apple Years Harrison reissues, in Mojo, Doyle writes of Material World having “spotlit the spirituality and the dreaminess”, through “the gentle, non-preachy The Light That Has Lighted The World and Be Here Now, both great works of look-around-you wonder”.
Simon Leng views the mid-song soloing as a highlight: “a rolling, lilting passage from Nicky Hopkins, topped by one of Harrison’s finest performances,” he writes. “In the closing bars of the statement, repeated as the song’s coda, the guitar vocalizes a series of six-string sobs. George finally made his guitar gently weep.” While echoing Leng’s sentiments, Guitar World editor Damian Fanelli includes the slide soloing on his list of Harrison’s best post-Beatles “Guitar Moments”.
Unlike Leng, Ian Inglis views the lyrics as Harrison “[resisting] the temptation to criticize”, since instead the unenlightened “have his sympathy”. To Inglis, the song’s weakness is that the “light” Harrison is striving to see is never made clear; whether it’s love, spiritual enlightenment, or even the Beatles, “who, after all, have illuminated the world for many millions of people”. The meaning is clear to theologian Dale Allison, who sums it up as an “achingly beautiful” song that “expresses resentment toward those who dislike the ex-Beatle George but thanksgiving for those who reflect the light of God”.
I have many George Harrison videos started, but it’s been a conundrum as to which ones to finish first…and since I can’t decide, its been a long time since I got a new one uploaded. The thing is that so many of George’s songs share similar themes and lyrical content…they didn’t call him the “the spiritual one” for nothing (oh yeah, many fans called him “the quiet one” bs….he should be known as “the spiritual one”! ;-)….so anyway, I have lots of videos started and I working on one I find things that I really like, but then think, “wow..this would work better for song x”…so effects get shuffled round n round and not much gets finished.
I’ve heard how some people, have said
that I’ve changed
That I’m not what I was
How it really is a shame
The thoughts in their heads,
Manifest on their brow
Like bad scars from ill feelings
they themselves arouse
So hateful of anyone that is happy
They live all their lives,
without looking to see
The light that has lighted the world
It’s funny how people, just won’t
As if nature itself – they’d prefer
So hard to move on
When you’re down in a hole
Where there’s so little chance,
to experience soul
I’m greatful to anyone,
that is happy or ‘free’
for giving me hope
while I’m looking to see
The light that has lighted the world