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Beware of Darkness (song)

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Title: Beware of Darkness (song)  
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Subject: All Things Must Pass (song), Infobox song/testcases, Matthew Sweet songs, George Harrison songs, Run of the Mill (George Harrison song)
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Beware of Darkness (song)

"Beware of Darkness" is a song written by English musician

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Joe Cocker covered "Beware of Darkness" for his Hymn for My Soul, 2007 album. In 2010 American singer Laura Martin recorded her version of this song on her "Songs for the Fall" album. The Hardin Burns, an American duo consisting of guitarist Andrew Hardin and ex-The Burns Sisters, Jeannie Burns, released a rendition of "Beware of Darkness" on their 2012 album "Lounge".

[3] Author Ian Inglis stated that Clapton's performance "captures the thoughtful intent of the original".[26][3]

Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs covered "Beware of Darkness" on their 2009 album Under the Covers, Vol. 2.[1][25]

Spock's Beard used "Beware of Darkness" as the title track of their 1996 album Beware of Darkness, basing their version on Leon Russell's.[1][24]

In 1986 an alternative American Band Concrete Blonde covered the song on their Concrete Blonde (album).[1][23]

Marianne Faithfull included the song on her album Rich Kid Blues, which - though recorded in 1971 - was released in 1984 and also on her 2000 compilation album It's All Over Now Baby Blue.[1][21][22]

Russell recorded his version of "Beware of Darkness" on his 1971 album Leon Russell and the Shelter People.[1][19][20] Australian critic Toby Creswell considered "Beware of Darkness" the highlight of the album, regarding this as the "definitive" version of the song, noting that Russell "brings chiaroscuro to this song about Eastern mysticism".[20] The song was also included on several of Russell's compilation albums, including Gimme Shelter!: The Best of Leon Russell and The Best of Leon Russell.[1]

An acoustic version of "Beware of Darkness", which was recorded on 27 May 1970,[16] was included on the Harrison bootleg album Beware of ABKCO![2][17][18] This version was later released on the 2001 remaster of All Things Must Pass.[16]

"Beware of Darkness" was one of the songs Harrison played at the Concert for Bangladesh at Madison Square Garden on 1 August 1971.[10] Harrison sang the lead vocals for the first two verses, and then Leon Russell took over the lead for the third verse.[3] It was played at both the afternoon and evening performances.[10] The evening performance of the song was included on the album Concert for Bangladesh as well as the film of the concert.[2][10][14][15]

Other versions

American rock band Beware of Darkness are named after the song.[13]

Chip Madinger and Mark Easter call the song "a stunning composition", reflecting the considerable growth in Harrison's songwriting abilities since his early Beatle days.[10] Writing for the music website Something Else!, Nick DeRiso includes "Beware of Darkness" among the highlights of Harrison's solo career on Apple Records; DeRiso describes it as Harrison's "best album's very best song – one where he perfectly matches a lyrical meditation on overcoming life's harder moments … with the sound, mysticism and fury of one of the early 1970s' greatest amalgamations of sidemen".[11] Writing for Mojo magazine in 2011, John Harris described the track as "simply jaw-dropping".[12]

AllMusic critic Richie Unterberger views "Beware of Darkness" as one of the highlights of All Things Must Pass.[7] Ben Gerson of Rolling Stone claims that it may be the album's best song, commenting on its "enigmatic" music and the combination of "warning" and "affirmation" in its lyrics.[8] Rolling Stone‍ '​s Anthony DeCurtis terms the song "haunting", noting that it reflects fears that Harrison hoped to calm with his religious beliefs.[9]


Author Simon Leng describes the Ringo Starr on drums.[3][4]

"Beware of Darkness" is a ballad containing dense imagery.[2] The song marks a return to the spiritual concerns of Harrison's songs with the Beatles such as "Within You Without You".[3][4] The lyrics of "Beware of Darkness" reflect the philosophy of the Radha Krishna Temple, with which Harrison was involved, in which spiritual concerns must always override material things.[3] In the verses, the listener is warned against various influences that may corrupt him or her.[3] Among the potential corrupting influences are con men ("soft shoe shufflers"), politicians ("greedy leaders") and pop idols of little substance ("falling swingers").[2][3] In addition, the lyrics warn against negative thoughts ("thoughts that linger"), since these corrupting influences and negative thoughts can lead to maya, or illusion, which distracts people from the true purpose of life.[2][3][4][5] The middle eight delivers the message that this "can hurt you", and that "that is not what you are here for."[2]

Lyrics and music


  • Lyrics and music 1
  • Reception 2
  • Other versions 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

. Radha Krishna Temple", reflects the influence of the My Sweet Lord The song warns against permitting illusion from getting in the way of one's true purpose, an admonition that, like the content of "[3][2]

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