What Is Life

Album: All Things Must Pass (1970)
Charted: 10
  • What I feel, I can't say
    But my love is there for you, any time of day
    But if it's not love that you need
    Then I'll try my best to make everything succeed

    Tell me, what is my life without your love
    Tell me, who am I without you, by my side?

    What I know, I can do
    If I give my love now to everyone like you
    But if it's not love that you need
    Then I'll try my best to make everything succeed

    Tell me, what is my life without your love
    Tell me, who am I without you, by my side
    Tell me, what is my life without your love
    Tell me, who am I without you, by my side?

    What I feel, I can't say
    But my love is there for you any time of day
    But if it's not love that you need
    Then I'll try my best to make everything succeed

    Tell me, what is my life without your love
    Tell me, who am I without you, by my side
    Oh tell me, what is my life without your love
    Tell me, who am I without you, by my side?

    What is my life without your love
    Tell me, who am I without you, by my side? Writer/s: George Harrison
    Publisher: BMG Rights Management, CONCORD MUSIC PUBLISHING LLC
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 34

  • Todd from Longview Wa.What does he mean when he says, "what I know, I can do
    If I give my love now to everyone like you" ?
  • Jules from OregonI absolutely cherish this song. Bless you, George.
  • Wendy from TennesseeI think the song is open to interpretation by the listener. It could be about your deity, lover, best friend, etc. That's what I like about it as well as the rockability of it!
  • Glenn from UkGeorge Harrison said that this song was inspired by McCartney's 'Hey Jude'.
  • Merman Steve from Phoenix, AzThis song still gives me chills after 45 years. I hope to play this at my wedding in honor of my love from/for Divine Father and Divine Mother and for my lovely wife to be.
  • Olivia from Philadelphia, PaGeorge Harrison has AMAZING talent! None of the other Beatles (Besides maybe Ringo) recognized that. He was the quiet Beatle but he was such an amazing song writer. He didn't deserve to die what so ever. It is just horrible. He was so pure and loving.
  • Chloe from St. Louis, MoWonderful song. I miss George.
  • Usctrojans from Chicago, IlThis song is incredible. I love the way it was used in "Goodfellas" during the "May 11, 1980" sequence -- which is one of my favorite scenes in movie history. The way Scorcese incorporates music in his films is absolutely brilliant.
  • Lee from Huntsville, Althe guitar work by george harrison in this tune rivals that of "here comes the sun"...both great riffs in the history of r@r. acoustic vs. electric.
  • Gary from Watford, United Kingdomfabulous song, george is a greatly missed by all, a great singer/songwriter in his own right.
  • James from Yucaipa, CaWhat is life is my favorite solo song by George Harrison.I love it! RIP George. James..Yucaipa,ca
  • Doug from Cambridge, OnTo offer a correction. Billy Preston was offered this song but turned it down.
    As far as talent go, though George was a late song writing bloomer, in the end, I feel he was a more talented musician then John.
  • Joe from Chicago, IlKlaus Voorman does a nice job on the bass.
  • Hanne from Hoejby, DenmarkGeorge Harrison was a great song writer and a wonderful person. Shine on, George!
  • Ken from Louisville, KyIn the "electronic press kit" video interview provided for the "All Things Must Pass" 2001 re-release/re-mix, George commented that Phil Spector put "too much echo" on the orginal production of this song.
  • Tom from Alameda, CaBadfinger was the backup band on this song.
  • Mike from Thimphu - Currently, OtherPeter in Halifax (my old home town) and any other friends: I am with Peter (see above) on this. In fact, there is great encouragement, humour and motivation available from the words of any song where "she" and "he" (and other pronouns) are alternates for the mind states we encounter in the search for the clear consciouness of the Love that bring us happiness and contentment. Try listening to C&W and many other genres with such ears. I have played George's and his Beatley friends music for years and miss his presence greatly. His music is his gift. Love 'ya Georgie!
  • Steve from Chino Hills, CaGeorge Harrison was a great musician. I totally disagree with Frank from Westminster. John Lennon and Paul McCartney were two different musical visionaries of the Beatles. Their musical talents are legendary. Some of their music is approaching 50 years old. In 50 years with all the advances in computer technology there still hasn't been anybody like them. It's mostly due to the colaberation between Lennon and McCartney. Paul went on to form wings after the Beatles and the most commercial success. John wasn't as into touring and stardom, frequently making personal projects at home with his wife Yoko. He had a different talent. George was a good musician, but if it wasn't for the Beatles he wouldn't have been as big of a star. Poor Ringo, he couldn't compete with the other three. He had a few hit records but hasn't really done much since the Beatles.
  • Steve from Hamilton, New Zealand"What Is Life" and "Layla" written about the same woman Pattie Boyd. Clapton also wrote the song "Wonderful Tonight" about Boyd while he was married to her.
  • Peter from Halifax, CanadaWith all due repect to the commentator's personal beliefs in the matter and who comments that "What Is Life" is not one of George's "Religious songs", may I offer an alternative interpretation. First, George was a Spiritual person not a Religious person (George Bush is a self proclaimed "Religious" person - George Harrison was a "Spiritual" person - see the difference?) The song's lyrics never mention a woman, unlike "Something", his penultimate "Love" song directed at a female human personage. It took me many years of practicing Transcendental Meditation (which I started on George's inspiration in 1970) before it finally dawned on me that George had written this devotional song and had put it into the public air waves without being as "in your face" about his spirituality as was the case with "My Sweet Lord". Case in point, one of the principle tenants of the Krisna Consciouness movement (not a path with which I have direct personal experience), which George embraced as part of his personal spiritual journey, is the goal of constant companionship of the experience of the Godhead in life and the fruitlessness or emptiness of life without the integration of this Supreme Love into everyday life experience.
    Now, with that idea in mind re-read the lyrics and see if you still think he is talking about his relationship with a woman? If that does still not convince you, close your eyes and listen to the song as if you were meditating and see if his hidden meaning strikes you as it did me.
    Just some thoughts....
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScGeorge is greatly missed. luckily, we have this song!
  • Julian from Anaheim, CaOne of my favorite Beatle Solo songs!
  • Don from Newmarket, CanadaOne of Phil Spectot's great production efforts after his success with the girl groups of the sixties. The Wall of Sound is very apparent on this track. One of my favourite Harrison performances.
  • Mike from Carrier Mills, IlGreat and inspirational song. RIP George.
  • Musicfan from New York, NyJust heard this on the radio (12/05). Makes me miss George and his music TERRIBLY. :-(
  • Sylvia from London, EnglandHeha. Love it.
  • Nathan from Defiance, OhI first heard this song in the movie Goodfellas, which is also where I first heard Layla. Awesome guitar riff.
  • Frank from Westminster, ScIt's songs like this that make me think George was the most individually talented one of the Beatles. John and Paul were always better while butting-heads/feeding-off each other in the group, than when they went solo, but George just shined on his own.
  • Melissa from Fairborn, OhThis is one of my favorite solo George Harrison song from the 1970 album All Things Must Pass. I love the Price/Keys Brass, and a double tracked vocals from George Harrison.

    Melissa Layton Fairborn, Ohio melissaalayton@sbcglobal.net
  • Adam from Rochester, Nywow I love this song so much, just the whole feel of it puts you in a good mood, thought there'd be more comments. george will be missed.
  • Teresa from Mechelen, BelgiumA beautiful song of George Harrison and thanks to the great talent of Phil Spector, you can call it a "pearl of a song".
  • John from Melbourne, AustriaBilly Preston also played keyboards on Let it Be
  • Brooke from Sedona, AzThis song was used in the movie "Goodfellas".. great scene if you remember, Ray Liotta's character and Lorraine Bracco's character are in the car driving around and are paranoid that they see a police helicopter following them around wherever they go.
  • Matthew from New York, NyBilly Preston wasn't just present at the Get Back sessions. He also played piano on the song.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Joe Elliott of Def LeppardSongwriter Interviews

The Def Leppard frontman talks about their "lamentable" hit he never thought of as a single, and why he's juiced by his Mott The Hoople cover band.

Max Cavalera of Soulfly (ex-Sepultura)Songwriter Interviews

The Brazilian rocker sees pictures in his riffs. When he came up with one of his gnarliest songs, there was a riot going on.

Krishna DasSongwriter Interviews

The top chant artist in the Western world, Krishna Das talks about how these Hindu mantras compare to Christian worship songs.

Michael Sweet of StryperSongwriter Interviews

Find out how God and glam metal go together from the Stryper frontman.

Brian Kehew: The Man Behind The RemastersSong Writing

Brian has unearthed outtakes by Fleetwood Mac, Aretha Franklin, Elvis Costello and hundreds of other artists for reissues. Here's how he does it.

P.F. SloanSongwriter Interviews

P.F. was a teenager writing hits and playing on tracks for Jan & Dean when he wrote a #1 hit that got him blackballed.