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Fall of a Super Star: George Harrison

    Flags are at half-mast in Liverpool as the city mourns one of its most famous sons, George Harrison. He rose to international fame at the age of 17 as a member of the Beatles and went on to a career as a leading British film producer. Musically, he defined a generation, with borrowings from Eastern music and religion. Millions of fans worldwide have been united in their grief and tributes have been paid by musicians and world leaders as diverse as Michael Jackson and Queen Elizabeth. Nickalus Witchell reports.

    George Harrison was an unlikely rock star, an unassuming man, cynical about celebrity, concentrating on what mattered, the music. He’d been a heavy smoker for many years. Three years ago, he disclosed that he had cancer. He’d gone to Los Angeles for a final attempt at treatment. He died at a friend’s house yesterday afternoon. In a statement, his family said, he left this world as he lived in it, conscious of God, fearless of death, and at peace.

    Of the four young Liverpudlians whose music had such an influence on popular culture in the 1960’s, only two now survive. Paul McCartney first met George Harrison at school. 

Paul McCartney: He’s a lovely man, I love him dearly. I grew up with him and I like to remember all the great times we had together in Liverpool and with the Beatles and ever since, really. Say, I’m very sad for him and his family and for all of us. A fantastic guy, lovely man, great sense of humor, I was lucky enough to see him a couple of weeks ago and he was still laughing and joking. A very brave man and I’m just privileged to have known him and I love him like he’s my brother.

    In a statement, Ringo Starr, the other surviving Beatle, said: “We will miss George, for his sense of love, his sense of music, and his sense of laughter.”

    Tony Blair, in Dublin with the Irish Prime Minister, was ten when the Beatles had their first number one.

Tony Blair: I never had the privilege of meeting George Harrison, but the generation of Bertie and myself, I mean we grew up with the Beatles. You know, their music, and the band, the personalities of the band were the background for our lives. I think people will be very sad at his death and I think it’s worth pointing out that he wasn’t just a great musician and artist, but he did an immense amount for charity as well, so he will be very, very sadly missed by people right around the world.

    In Liverpool, the city that was theirs and which they made famous, some people laid flowers for George Harrison at a statue of the Beatles. Others signed a book of  condolence. And on Penny Lane, about which they once sang a song, memories were stirred.

Fan 1: We used to watch him when the Cabin and the rooftop sessions, and followed their music. It’s a very sad day for the people of Liverpool today.

Fan 2: I was really, really sad about it because it looked like it was going to happen, you know. But I was really sad.

    In New York, the city where 21 years ago, John Lennon was shot dead by a deranged fan, at Strawberry Fields, tributes were being paid to another member of that group, a man whose music inspired many. 

Bob Geldof: I think almost uniquely possibly in music and certainly in guitar, are a guitarist’s paces, his, all his solos or his little licks can be hummed by practically everyone in the world. I don’t think there is another guitar player can claim that.

    Some months ago, just before his final illness, George Harrison undertook his last project. It was the reworking of a 1970 album entitled, “All Things Must Pass.”

    Nickalus Witchell, BBC News.


重点注释:


mast: n. 桅杆

diverse: a. 不同的 

unassuming: a. 谦逊的,不装腔作势的。

cynical: a. 愤世嫉俗的

Bertie: 指爱尔兰总理伯蒂·埃亨(Bertie Ahern)。

condolence: n. 哀悼  

Penny Lane: 披头士曾有一首歌叫“Penny Lane”。

披头士最初在酒吧演唱,Cabin就是那间酒吧的名字。而披头士最后一次是演唱是在一个房顶上录制的。

deranged: a. 发疯的 

lick: n. (美国俚语)(即兴插入的)爵士乐装饰乐句,小过门。


参考译文:


    利物浦市为他们的著名歌星乔治·哈里森的去世下半旗致哀。十七岁时,他成为披头士乐队的一名成员,并由此一跃而成为国际明星,之后还成为英国一名主要的电影制片人。在音乐风格上,他借鉴了东方音乐和宗教音乐,影响了整整一代人。全世界数百万乐迷们悲伤地聚在一起,包括迈克尔·杰克逊和伊丽莎白女王在内的音乐家们和世界领袖都送来了祭奠之词。尼古拉斯·威彻尔报道。

    乔治·哈里森并不像是一名摇滚乐手,他是一个谦逊的人,不争名逐利,全心投入他最喜欢的音乐之中。他吸烟多年。三年前,他透露了自己患有癌症,曾赴洛杉矶尝试最后一次治疗。昨天下午,他在一个朋友的家中去世。他的家人发表了一份声明说,他离开这个世界就像他活在这个世界上时一样,敬畏上帝,平静而不惧怕死亡。

    这四个年轻的利物浦青年的音乐曾对二十世纪六十年代的流行文化造成巨大影响,如今,却只有两人依然健在。保罗·麦卡特尼最初在学校里认识了乔治·哈里森。

保罗·麦卡特尼: 他是一个可爱的人,我深深地爱着他。我和他一起长大,我会永远记住我们在利物浦以及在披头士乐队一起度过的所有的美妙时光。对于他的去世,我为他的家人以及我们自己感到万分悲伤。他是一个富于幻想的人,一个可爱的人,幽默感十足。我很幸运,两星期前见到他时他还谈笑风生。他是一个勇敢的人,认识他我感到十分荣幸。我爱他,就像爱自己的亲兄弟一般。

    披头士另一名依然健在的成员林戈·斯塔尔在一份声明中说,“我们会想念乔治的,想念他的爱、乐感和笑容。”

    托尼·布莱尔正在都柏林与爱尔兰总理在一起,当披头士第一次夺得排行榜冠军的时候, 他年仅十岁。

托尼·布莱尔:我从未有幸与乔治·哈里森相识,但对我和伯蒂这一代人来说,披头士伴随着我们长大。他们的音乐、乐队,以及乐队的个性都成了我们生活的背景。我想,人们会为他的去世感到万分悲痛; 尤其需要指出的是,他并不仅仅只是一个伟大的音乐家和艺术家,他还为慈善事业作出了巨大的贡献,全世界都将深深地想念他。

    在利物浦,这座生养他们以及因其成名的城市,一些人在披头士的雕像下为乔治·哈里森献上鲜花。还有人则在吊唁书上签字。在彭尼街,他们曾为此唱过一支歌,如今,记忆都被激活了。

歌迷甲:从披头士最开始时一直到他们解散,我一直关注着他们的音乐,这对利物浦人民来说是悲痛的一天。

歌迷乙:我非常伤心,这看起来无法避免。但我还是非常伤心。

    纽约的草莓地,二十一年前一个发狂的歌迷曾在这里开枪杀害了约翰·列侬,如今人们在这里为乔治·哈里森设祭坛,他的歌曾激励了许多人。

鲍勃·吉尔多夫: 我想他编曲的风格独特,尤其是吉他弹奏,用的是吉他手的节奏。他所有的独唱部分都有他即兴加入的小过门,几乎每个人都能轻轻哼出来。我想没有其他的吉他手能做到这一点。

    几个月前,在最后一次疾病袭击前,乔治·哈里森接受了最后一项任务—重新制作七十年代《一切都成为过去》这张专辑。

    英国广播公司记者尼古拉斯·威彻尔报道。