Look, I’m not sure if “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” is one of the greatest terrible songs ever written, or perhaps one of the worst great songs, but one night in 2004 something magical happened as an all-star group was joined by one of the great guitarists in history. As George Harrison was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Prince joined the band – and completely demolished Harrison’s signature Beatles song. Love the song or hate it – this performance is truly magical.
It’s now a year since Prince died, and amongst the hosannas is this amazing oral history of the event from The New York Times.
His three-minute guitar solo is a Prince milestone, a chance to see him outside of the purple-tinted (for once, he is dressed in red) context of his own meticulous studio craft. This was Prince the Lead Guitarist — those chops apparent on songs like “Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?,” “Electric Chair” and “When Doves Cry” were given free range to roam. And when he tossed his instrument into the air at the very end of the song, it never appeared to land; it was almost as if Mr. Harrison had grabbed it himself
It’s true – the guitar never does come down. Watch: