George Harrison Wrote This Song on the Day He Decided to Call It Quits With the Beatles

By the time the Beatles got around to recording Get Back, it’s a wonder all four of them managed to be in the same room at the same time. As anyone who watched Peter Jackson’s 2021 documentary about the album will know, the band was rife with in-fighting.

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The main culprit behind the rift seemed to be Paul McCartney and his uncompromising vision. As the story goes, Macca would often shun anything that didn’t fit his personal goals for Let It Be. George Harrison certainly found it unbearable, causing him to hang up his Beatles hat on January 10, 1969.

Though he eventually tempered his emotions long enough to embark on that iconic rooftop concert (you know the one), it was one of the final nails in the coffin for the Fab Four.

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Soon after announcing his temporary leave, Harrison took to his guitar to write one of his most enduring solo tracks, “Wah Wah.”

You’ve given me a wah-wah
And I’m thinking of you
And all the things that we used to do
Wah-wah, wah-wah

While the lyrics above may not seem particularly cutting, they were aimed at his Beatles bandmates and their constant squabbling.

“That was the song, when I left from the Let It Be movie, there’s a scene where Paul and I are having an argument, and we’re trying to cover it up,” Harrison once said. “Then the next scene I’m not there and Yoko’s just screaming, doing her screeching number. Well, that’s where I’d left, and I went home to write ‘Wah-Wah.’ It had given me a wah-wah, like I had such a headache with that whole argument. It was such a headache.”

The song would eventually end up on Harrison’s era-defining All Things Must Pass. Revisit the track, below. Can you pick up on the sour undertones?

(Photo by Steve Morley/Redferns)

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