Robert Francis by Filipp Gortalum
One’s favorite Beatle says a lot about a person. John fans are intellectuals, Paul represents the beautiful people, Ringo lovers go with the flow, and those who favor George lean toward the mystic and spiritual. An ardent Beatles buff and devout Hari fan, I have found these Beatle-based characterizations to be remarkably accurate, and the audience and performers at the Tribute to George Harrison at Spaceland Sept. 12 proved no exceptions. Upon entering the Silver Lake club, which I’ve done 100 times before, I was struck this night by a palpable mirth swelling the space surrounding the stage. The audience paid keen and respectful attention to each note poured lovingly from the musicians, who offered heartfelt homages to someone regarded not just as a departed musician, but a friend. Among Hari’s pals performing his tunes spanning the Fab Four days to his solo career were local heroes Leslie Stevens (Leslie and the Badgers) who did a fantastic countrified version of “Here Comes the Sun,” Ryan Ross (Panic at the Disco, the Young Veins), Andy Creighton (Parson Redheads, the World Record), Josh Charney (Le Switch), Amanda Jo Williams, Matt Popieluch (Foreign Born, Fools Gold), and many more. While the performances were impressive, the real tribute to George was in the fact that proceeds went to the Harmony Project (a nonprofit that teaches music to underprivileged youth in Los Angeles); in 1973 he mobilized the first ever charity concert with his Concert for Bangladesh, now a popular fundraising method for deserving causes. The concert, put together by popular music website and company When You Awake, is hoped by curator Jody Orsborn to be the first in a regular tribute series.
— Linda Rapka