Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)

Album: Living In The Material World (1973)
Charted: 8 1

Songfacts®:

  • George Harrison explained in his autobiography I Me Mine: "Sometimes you open your mouth and you don't know what you are going to say, and whatever comes out is the starting point. If that happens and you are lucky, it can usually be turned into a song. This song is a prayer and personal statement between me, the Lord, and whoever likes it." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Laura - Eatontown, NJ
  • The song's positive message and spiritual overtones coincided with the height of Harrison's devotion to Hindu spirituality. As with Harrison's religious number "My Sweet Lord," it combines the Hindu devotional song with Western gospel tradition. However, unlike "My Sweet Lord," Harrison prays throughout to the "Lord" rather than Hare Krishna.
  • "Give Me Love" became George Harrison's second US #1 following "My Sweet Lord." It pushed Paul McCartney and Wings' "My Love" from the top position, marking the only occasion that two former Beatles have held the top two chart positions on the Hot 100.
  • George Harrison played the guitars on the track. The other musicians are:

    Nicky Hopkins piano
    Jim Keltner drums
    Klaus Voormann bass
    Gary Wright organ.
  • American session drummer Jim Keltner recalled his contribution to Uncut magazine: "The drums are kind of subdued, but I was playing a very busy little syncopated part, trying to play with the guitar - and George was so easy to play with. When we finally got the take, I remember listening and thinking, I wouldn't have got away with that with anybody else. Any other producer would probably have said, OK, that's cool, now let's have a proper backbeat and nail it down."
  • This was the only single released from Harrison's second post-Beatles solo album, Living in the Material World. After The Beatles broke up in 1969, he had a backlog of songs that he unloaded on the 1970 triple album All Things Must Pass. Over the next few years, he continued his spiritual pursuits and took on various charitable projects, like organizing the Concert For Bangladesh in 1971. Around the same time he released the album, he set up the Material World Charitable Foundation, which he funded with proceeds from the from the album; all the publishing royalties to "Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)" go to the foundation.
  • Harrison played this on his 1974 Dark Horse tour, which ended up being his only tour as a solo artist. (One reason he didn't like to tour: After a Beatles show, he stuck around to watch the cleanup and saw a bulldozer push away the piles of rubbish left behind. That image made a lasting impression). He also played it when he joined Eric Clapton's tour for some shows in Japan in 1991.
  • Harrison landed one more #1 US hit: "Got My Mind Set On You," which hit the top spot in 1988, 24 years after "Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)." This was a record for longest stretch between chart toppers until The Beach Boys surfed in with "Kokomo" later that year.

Comments: 25

  • Sandy from ChicagoAlthough, one is seeking whoever made them, thus Lord, and presently unsure thus say Hindu, Budism, Muslim, Christian etc, if one calls out to whoever made them with Honest heart Whoever You are Please show me so I Know... N are humble to allow Him to ... I don't believe it is about religion in my experience of 45 years As That's exactly what I did and He tangibly entered me Being Born Again of His Spirit as He said would happen The Word of God says He opened my spiritual eyes so I could understand it. As in Like 24:45 said must happen. Not enough to know about any religion we Must Know Him tangibly!! Hope this helps those searching
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn June 24th 1973, "Give Me Love" by George Harrison peaked at #1 (for 1 week) on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart...
    The record he knocked out of the top spot was "My Love" by fellow ex-Beatle Paul McCartney...
    Billy Preston's "Will It Go Round In Circles" then bumped "Give Me Love" from the #1 position after one week (Billy played electric piano on the Beatles' #1 1969 hit "Get Back")...
    R.I.P. Mr. Harrison (1943 - 2001) and Mr. Preston (1946 - 2006).
  • Josh from Champaign, IlSorry Loida, I know it's probably hard to believe that George was that serious about Hinduism, but he was. Listen to some live versions of him singing the song, it's clear he's singing "birth". Hindus of course believe in reincarnation, but one is reincarnated because they don't get it quite right, or they get it really wrong and so they're born again (yeah, totally different concept than Christians) and again at different levels of life (you can come back as lower animals as well) until they hopefully, finally reach moksha or liberation.
  • Jim from Hammond, InI thought keep me free from birth meant he didn't want more children
  • Phillip from Louisiana, LaYes!!! The lyric is "keep me free from birth" . In the Hindu religion, if you pass to heaven, then you are kept free from birth. Yes George worshiped as a Hindu.
  • Brian from Wilkes-barre, PaThere seems to be some question as to the correct lyrics. I no longer have the liner notes but it makes sense for the correct lyrics to be "keep me free from birth," as it rhymes with "give me peace on earth." As to the meaning of the line, that is the beauty of a well done song; many will find different meaning. For me, it is consistent with my Christian beliefs for the meaning to be kept free from sin, or rather, the penalty of it.
    George Harrison's music was my favorite of the Beatles members' solo work.
  • Pc from Newtown, PaThe lyric is "Keep me free from birth", not burden. Check the liner notes if you doubt. Song is on my top 100 of all time.
  • Amanda from Gretna, Vti truly and dearly love this song. it brings tears to my eyes sometimes and i just cant believe he's actually dead. 2001 was definitly not a good year. what with george dieing and the twin towers being knocked down, yep a s--tty year for us over here. even though i was six and dont have much recolection of it.
  • Loida from Houston, Tx, TxIt's actually "free from burden"....not "free from birth (which is what it sounds like, actually). I was puzzled by it too until I saw the official lyrics. Hope that helps.
  • Geoff from Adelaide, AustraliaA great version of this song was performed by Jeff Lynne at the Concert for George. It is a most beautiful song.
  • Teresa from Mechelen, Belgium"All things must past" a great album and George Harrison appreciated Phil Spector very much. George H. and John L. already liked Spector while they were Beatles and wanted him to produce "Let it be". George H. said about
    "River deep, mountain high" that it was a perfect song from the first till the last note and I agree(it's Phil Spector's masterpiece).
  • Ken from Louisville, KyGeorge wasn't very happy with Phil Spector's "Wall of Sound" production on his first album, so he made sure on this album to only have minimum overdubbing.
  • Kevin from Reading , PaThis song and the album it was taken from both hit number 1 in the US, but a follow-up single was never released. Most people feel that "Don't Let Me Wait Too Long," one of the few non preachy songs on the album and with a great slide guitar and catchy chorus, would have been a hit as well. A las, we'll never know.
  • Rasa Bihari Das from Tamworth, Uk, EnglandCharles from West Columbia, when he said keep me free from birth he meant he doesnt want to stay in the material world and have his soul take birth again in another body in the cycle of birth and death, reincarnation...rather he wants to liberate and have an eternal spiritual body x
  • Charles from West Columbia , Sc"Keep Me Free From Birth" I always thought he was praying for everyone to always be free from the time you are born thru your whole life. Keep me free starting at birth.
  • Mad from Newcastle, Englandit is like a prayer from George flying up to heaven in the beautiful form of music.
  • Mad from Newcastle, Englandthis is an amazing spiritual song, and his mind seems to work similarly to many great legacys. If songs had personalitys, i would say in 3 words kind, caring and beautiful within.
  • Deborah from Nyc, NyThis is George's prayer, and "Keep me free from birth" means to keep out of the cylce of reincarnation and attain enlightenment or heaven. This is a lovely, spiritual song by George.
  • Melissa from Fairborn, OhI love the slide guitar solo part during the song.
  • Warrinder from A Town, CanadaWhat does he mean by "Keep me free from birth?"
  • Max from Morristown, NjWhevenever I listen to this song it really makes me realize how much I miss George.
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScI think this is my favorite one by him!
  • Sylvia from London, EnglandAwesomeness!!! This and Here Comes The Sun and like, every other George Harrison song is like, my favorite song ever!!!
  • Randy Lyken from Minneapolis, MnGive Me Love is my favorite George Harrison song. My childhood really sucked with most adults and bullies being mean to me but when I listened to this song on the radio I had a really great day! This is one song that I will never get sick of! RIP George Harrison.
  • Luna from London, EnglandThis is an amazing song. It's soooooo good!
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