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"Our customers are definitely responding to Harrison's death and are wanting to hear his music both with the Beatles and his solo work."
——Bob Bell, Wherehouse Records

FANS GIVE GEORGE'S MUSIC LOVE

Harrison Albums Surge At Retail In Wake of Ex-Beatle's Passing
As fans worldwide come to grips with the untimely death of "the quiet Beatle" following his extended bout with cancer, it's no surprise that many are grieving in the record stores and paying their respects to their fallen hero by paying for his records—those in print and available, at any rate.

Two George Harrison titles saw markedly increased sales over the weekend and up to presstime: the remastered version of All Things Must Pass, released in January, and The Best of George Harrison compilation. According to sources, available stock of these titles sold out quickly upon news of Harrison's passing, and reorders have been coming steadily, with orders for Best of outpacing All Things by about two to one.

But it is the phenomenal Beatles compilation 1 that is seeing the biggest sales spike. The collection (featuring the Harrison song "Something"), which has sold over 7.7 million copies since its release last November, sold about 17k last week; the title appears to be on track to sell upwards of 30k by the end of this week. Similarly, both Best of and All Things have been selling fewer than 1,000 per week but are poised to show substantial increases. All Things is currently #1 at Amazon, which had plenty of stock on hand.

"Our customers are definitely responding to Harrison's death and are wanting to hear his music, both with the Beatles and his solo work," says Wherehouse Music's Bob Bell. "It's unfortunate that most of his catalog is currently out of print, and I would hope a new deal will be made soon to make that music available to his fans once again."

Of Harrison's catalog of about 16 titles, only five are in print in the U.S., all on Capitol. Besides the aforementioned All Things (originally released in 1970) and Best of (1976), they are 1973's Living in the Material World, 1974's Dark Horse and 1975's Extra Texture. Capitol has phased out 1971's Concert for Bangladesh in preparation for the release of a remastered edition a la All Things.

Unfortunately, Harrison's solo work from the late '70s through the early '90s on his own Dark Horse imprint, which went through .Warner Bros., is out of print, as are the two Traveling Wilburys albums he recorded with Bob Dylan, Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty and Roy Orbison in 1988 and 1990. These titles include 1976's 33 1/3, 1979's George Harrison, 1981's Somewhere in England, 1982's Gone Troppo, 1987's Cloud Nine and Songs by George Harrison and 1992's Live in Japan. Rights to albums reverted to Harrison, and any plans to reissue them are unknown at present.

Not surprisingly, All Things is reportedly selling briskly in the U.K. An HMV executive told Reuters on Monday that it looked like the album could move onto the British charts next week.

Harrison had reportedly been working on tracks for a new album, tentatively titled Portrait of a Leg End, prior to his final illness. As with the Dark Horse albums, it is unknown at present if any of the approximately 25 tracks Harrison recorded will ever see the light of day.

Harrison's last work, a song written with his son Dhani called "Horse to the Water," appears on former Squeeze keyboardist Jools Holland's new Small World, Big Band. The album,  released in the U.K. last week, will be available in the U.S. in January through Warner Strategic Marketing.

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