The Beatles: George Harrison and Eric Clapton had a “duel” over Pattie Boyd.
George Harrison, the lead singer of the Beatles, didn’t want to lose his wife, Pattie Boyd, to one of his friends, so he sought to win her love the only way he knew how.
Eric Clapton, a friend of George Harrison’s, was quickly smitten when he met Pattie Boyd, his wife. Clapton soon confessed to Harrison that he loved Boyd and wished to be with her. Boyd remained faithful to her husband and continued to date a Beatles member, but Clapton refused to give up. Clapton and Boyd eventually married in 1979, just two years after her divorce from Harrison.
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According to stories at the time, Harrison called Clapton and Boyd to his Oxfordshire estate shortly after, where he advised they fight for Boyd the only way they knew how: through music.
Actor John Hurt, a friend of Harrison’s, was supposedly staying with him at the time and acted as a witness for the two musicians.
“George desperately needed a small audience,” Hurt recalled. He took two guitars and two amplifiers down to the hall and set them up. George encouraged Eric to play when he arrived with Pattie.”
“It was a remarkable competition because George had clearly given him the lesser guitar and amplifier.”
“The two men improvised for two hours in a historic guitar war of superstars,” said Clapton’s biographer Ray Coleman in the rocker’s biography Survivor.
Clapton “won” the guitar duel in the end.
“[Clapton] was unbeatable,” Hurt recalled.
Harrison became “rattled” after attempting to be “too smart” with his guitar trills, according to him.
In contrast to Harrison’s instrumental gymnastics, Clapton “concentrated on playing a few important notes.”
It’s difficult to tell if this guitar duel was staged in jest or if they were truly fighting for Pattie’s heart.
In any case, Harrison and Clapton remained close friends until the latter’s death from cancer in 2001.
When Pattie and Clapton married, the Quiet Beatle even attended their ceremony.
Harrison also performed at the wedding reception for the happy couple.
Clapton began referring to Harrison as his “husband-in-law” later on.
Years before, though, Harrison and Boyd had a tense relationship.
“Brinkwire Summary News” was published during the breakdown of their relationship.