October 9, 2014
It’s John Lennon’s Birthday! HAPPY JOHN LENNON DAY!
We conclude this week’s musical celebration leading up to the birth of John Lennon on this day, October 9th, 1940, with Dhani Harrison.
Named after the 6th and 7th notes of the Indian music scale, dha and ni, Dhani Harrison was born to Beatle George Harrison and his wife Olivia on August 1, 1978. Harrison grew up with his parents in Henley-On-Thames in Friar Park, the estate on which his father had lived since 1970.
He is a graduate of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, USA, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree studying visual arts. After graduating from Brown in 2001, Harrison pursued a career as an aerodynamicist before turning his sights to a career in music.
Harrison’s debut as a professional musician took place in early 2002 when he began work completing his father’s final album “Brainwashed” with the assistance of family friend and fellow Traveling Wilbury Jeff Lynne (Dhani is also a Wilbury, having been credited as Ayrton Wilbury on the overdubs to the bonus tracks “Maxine” and “Like a Ship”).
In April 2006 Harrison announced that his band thenewno2 had begun recording and on August 11, 2008 their debut album, “You Are Here”, was released online, followed by a physical release of the album in stores March 31st, 2009. Their performance later that spring at the Coachella Music Festival was dubbed Best Debut Performance at the festival by Spin Magazine.
In 2009 thenewno2 began their first US tour joined by The Heartless Bastards and headlined by the band Wolfmother. The tour began in Dallas, Texas on October 29th and ran through to November 24th concluding with a gig in Los Angeles, California. After wrapping up the tour Harrison took some time off to begin work on a new musical partnership, this time pairing with Ben Harper and Joseph Arthur to form the band Fistful Of Mercy. Their debut album, “As I Call You Down” was released October 5th, 2010 and was named “One of the Best Side Projects of 2010” by NPR (National Public Radio) in the United States.
July 31, 2012 saw the release of thenewno2’s second album, “thefearofmissongout”. Later that year Rolling Stone Magazine named thenewno2 one of the 10 Must-See Acts at the 2012 Lollapalooza festival. In 2013 Dhani and company wrote the score for the film “Beautiful Creatures” and recorded the album at his father’s old workplace, Abbey Road Studios, in London, England.
Most recently Harrison headed a star studded cast of musicians honoring his father’s music and legacy at GeorgeFest held September 28, 2014 at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles. The event served as a fundraiser for Sweet Relief, an organization which benefits career musicians who are struggling to make ends meet. 100 percent of ticket sales went to the organization.
Here we have the familiar warmth of that old Harrison slide guitar, this time performed by son Dhani, who also does double duty as back up vocalist to Bob Dylan’s son Jakob’s lead on this cover of John Lennon’s “Gimme Some Truth”.
Happy birthday John! Thank you for all you gave of yourself. The light you shone shines on. Forever…