George turns his back on those two-fingered followers

John Lichfield
Thursday 28 August 1997 00:02 BST

George Harrison thinks Oasis, who have acknowledged the Beatles as a source of inspiration for much of their music, are egotistical "rubbish".

And the Spice Girls? "The good thing about them," he told a French newspaper, "is that you can look at them with the sound turned down".

The ex-Beatle, aged 54, was giving an interview to Le Figaro to promote a new album, Chants of India, by his friend the virtuoso of the sitar, Ravi Shankar. Harrison produced the album.

Asked whether he enjoyed groups such as U2, Texas and Oasis, he replied: "Rubbish! They aren't very interesting. It's OK if you're 14 years old. I prefer to listen to Dylan."

"You know what irritates me about modern music, it's all based on ego. Look at a group like U2. Bono and his band are so egocentric ... The more you jump around, the bigger your hat is, the more people listen to your music ... The only important thing is to sell, and make money. It's nothing to do with talent." This is the second time Harrison has criticised Oasis. He recently said the band could do without "the silly one", Liam Gallagher.

The Beatles, he said, "had a value which will last for ever. Today there are groups who sell lots of records and then disappear ... will we remember U2 in 30 years? Or the Spice Girls? I doubt it. The good thing about them is that you can look at them with the sound turned down."

Harrison, who has not made a record for five years, said that he was "still writing songs ... I would like to record again with the Travelling Wilburys. "

Leading article, page 13

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