ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Concert For Bangladesh: Celebrating 40 Years of Giving Back

Updated on August 5, 2016
  • Originally published: July 31, 2011

On November 12, 1970, a devastating cyclone hit East Pakistan causing severe flooding and numerous fatalities. In a country that was already suffering from famine and a war, the disaster of a storm was the last thing they needed. Fast forward almost a year later and the country had yet to recover. Native Pakistani and world renowned Sitarist, Ravi Shankar was devastated by the lack of resources and aid Bangladesh was receiving. It was in July 1971 when he approached his friend and protege, George Harrison. Could George help? Ravi asked. Harrison went on to write and record the benefit single, "Bangladesh" and made sure every cent went to UNICEF. Feeling that the release of the single was not enough, Shankar approached Harrison with the idea of a "small" benefit concert to help with continuing efforts. Right away, plans for what would be become "The Concert For Bangladesh" were under way. The show was organized in just five weeks.

Originally, Harrison had asked his former band mates, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and Ringo Starr to help him by performing along side him on stage in New York. In the end, Starr was the only one to show. McCartney felt it awkward seeing as the Beatles had only broken up a year earlier. Lennon was on for the show up until two days prior. George had asked that Yoko Ono not perform with Lennon, which Lennon agreed to, but Yoko found it offensive and John left the state two days before the big show.

George Harrison (left) and Ravi Shankar
George Harrison (left) and Ravi Shankar

With Ravi and Ringo in tow, Harrison had yet to complete his band. He reached out to his musician friends, Eric Clapton, Leon Russell, Billy Preston, Klaus Voorman, Pete Ham of Badfinger, and an unconfirmed until the very last second appearance by the man himself, Bob Dylan. A date was set for August 1st, 1971 and the location was Madison Square Garden. There were to be two shows. One at noon and another at seven. All in mind was a goal to raise $15,000. They ended up raising a total of five million instead.

Harrison's infamous white suit featured stiched "Om" symbols in the suit's collar.
Harrison's infamous white suit featured stiched "Om" symbols in the suit's collar.
Ringo Starr was the only other former Beatle to play along with drummer Jim Keltner.
Ringo Starr was the only other former Beatle to play along with drummer Jim Keltner.
Harrison and Clapton (far right)
Harrison and Clapton (far right)
Harrison, Bob Dylan (center) and Leon Russell.
Harrison, Bob Dylan (center) and Leon Russell.

As we prepare to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the legendary show, UNICEF has declared August, The Month of Giving. The Concert for Bangladesh has been released digitally on itunes and a free streaming was offered July 29 through the first. All proceeds from the sales go towards the George Harrison Foundation for UNICEF. For a great cause, and great music. Though Harrison passed away in 2001, he'd be proud to see how much of an imprint his "small" show left on the world.

Dylan performing "It Takes A Lot to Laugh (It takes A Train to Cry)"

Billy Preston performing "That's The Way God Planned It"

Harrison performing "Here Comes the Sun"

Harrison performing "Bangladesh"

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)