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Beady Eye and rock’s romance with Hinduism

Liam Gallagher chants the Guru Dev mantra over a cover for Beady Eye. Like George Harrison and many other before him, what is it that attracts musicians to Hindu mysticism?

The surprising release of a cover by Beady Eye (in support of the relief effort in Japan) provides an opportunity to explore the relationship between Hinduism, The Vedanta and rock music (with a slight detour into jazz). A cover of the Beatles song Across The Universe, written by John Lennon and appearing on their final Let It Be (1970) album, it contains the phrase Jai Guru Deva Om, a term of veneration, meaning “I bow to the great teacher of truth”, used by followers of their then guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, in honour of his guru (the eponymous Guru Dev).
It is considered necessary, in order to learn the higher spiritual truths, to be guided by a teacher who can communicate them from direct experience. The Beatles had met the Maharishi (at the suggestion of George’s then wife Patti), in 1967, when he gave a talk at a hotel in London, and then subsequently joined him on retreats in Bangor, Wales and Rishikesh in India, to practice his technique of Transcendental Meditation.
The song was probably written in 1968 and first appeared on the compilation album No One’s Gonna Change Our World (1969), in aid of the World Wildlife Fund. It is typical of western interpretations of Indian mysticism in that it sounds trippy – trippiness, like psychedelia, is a term that suggest the expansion of consciousness resulting from the use of LSD and Mescaline, in the main, and also strong Marijuana and the best Hashish.
It was a central cultural strand among many (others included co-operative anarchism, laissez fair enterprise, sexual liberation and artistic experimentation) that influenced the hippy movement of the time. It’s chief value was thought to be its philosophical perspective, and perhaps more pertinently, its consciousness expanding techniques that required no drug intake. There is a scene in the Woodstock (1970) movie that records the seminal rock festival of the previous year, where a group of American hippies sit in a field and are instructed by another in an extreme method of yoga, that he informs them, will help them to experience a drugless high.
As usual with this sort of approach, the point is missed entirely and a foreign, exotic culture is appropriated for its apparent usefulness in providing a euphoric thrill for disaffected middle class kids. But many in the counter-culture took up its study and practice with the longer term dedication required to understand its perspectival insights, with several rock musicians playing a leading role. The best known is perhaps George Harrison, the one Beatle who embraced Hinduism fully, providing finance for the Hare Krishna sect to establish their main centre in the UK, learning to play the sitar with the devout Hindu and master musician Ravi Shankar, and making several records that incorporated Vedantic chants as a central feature.
The Vedanta constitutes the philosophical core of Hinduism and presents of a view of life radically different from both the secular atheistic outlook popular among urban westerners and mainstream western religious beliefs of all kinds – which usually posit an external god figure who creates us, lets us go bad and is available to rescue us if we turn to him (sort of). Essentially proposing that the universe is itself conscious, and that universal consciousness is the underlying reality that we are all a part of, chanting is one of several methods used to directly access that reality (meditation, physical postures and exercises, prayer and contemplation are others).
The purpose, for example, of the Hare Krishna chant in Harrison’s number one hit My Sweet Lord (see below), or the extended chants in the concluding part of his song Brainwashed is to re-focus the mind on its root cause. Hare and Krishna are terms for the universal consciousness. By repeating them and contemplating their meaning, the limited mind, that is clouded by the materiality of the world, can be clarified and the truth understood as a direct experience.
The mind is limited because the material world, made up of energy that emerges from the basis – pure consciousness – creates forms that though they are not actually separated from the basis, are experienced as such due to their dynamic, moving nature. The universe is seen as both moving and still, the two aspects held in balance, with the still essence – the conscious aspect – an infinite and therefore boundless and greater reality than the ever-changing dynamic materiality. Once the mind is clarified fully and the deeper reality directly encountered, all that is sought in limited life is realised. Boundless love, total peace, complete harmony, absolute knowledge are all found when the reality is realised. They are terms that refer to the reality.
As well as visiting Maharishi in Rishikesh, George Harrison also stayed at the ashram (community) of Ravi Shankar’s guru Sathya Sai Baba and appears to have lived according to his beliefs until his death in 2001. Other rock stars of the time who found gurus were Pete Townshend of The Who, who was a follower of Meher Baba, Carlos Santana a follower of Sri Chinmoy, and in more modern times Boy George has studied with the Hare Krishna sect in London.

It is interesting to hear Liam Gallagher chant the Guru Dev mantra in the Beady Eye single. His former drummer in Oasis, Zak Starkey, is Ringo Starr’s son, but grew up with his mother’s second husband Isaac Tigrett, the founder of the Hard Rock Cafe restaurant chain, who is a devout follower of Sathya Sai Baba. Also his friend Johnny Marr, formerly of The Smiths, is an avowed fan of the guitarist John Mclaughlin and his work with the Mahavishnu Orchestra. Mclaughlin was also a follower of Sri Chinmoy, and made a devotional record with Carlos Santana that included an interpretation of the jazz track Acknowledgement from the John Coltrane album Love Supreme.
Coltrane was also influenced by the Vedanta and much of his later music explicitly attempted to express the underlying reality of universal consciousness. His wife Alice Coltrane became a follower of Swami Shivananda and started her own ashram in the USA and composed her music in the same mode as her late husband. I’m not sure if Liam is intentionally trying to invoke the ultimate truth in the single, but he will probably not be a total stranger to the concepts.

Liam Gallagher tour 2017-2018-2019-2020-2021 gigography

2017
30 May - O2 Ritz, Manchester, England
1 June - Electric Brixton, London, England
4 June - Rock im Park, Nürnberg, Deutschland
5 June - Pinkpop festival, Landgraaf, Nederland
10 June - Olympia theatre, Dublin, Ireland
11 June - Barrowlands, Glasgow, Scotland
14 June - Bergenfest festival, Bergenhus Festning, Norge
24 June - Glastonbury festival, England
6 July - Exit Festival, Novi Sad, Srbija
9 July - Festival Les Ardentes, Liege, Belgique
15 July - FIB festival Benicàssim, España
21 July - the Tall Ships Races, Turku, Suomi
23 July - Lollapalooza festival, Paris, France
28 July - McKittrick Hotel, New York City, USA
30 July - Rough Trade, New York City, USA
2 August - Park West, Chicago, USA
3 August - Lollapalooza festival, Chicago, USA
5 August - Osheaga festival, Montreal, Canada
10 August - National Olympic Sports Center Gymnasium, Beijing, China
12 August - CR Shenzhen Bay Sports Center Arena, Shenzhen, China
14 August - Manila’s Mall of Asia Arena, Maynilà, Pilipinas
17 August - Zepp, Tokyo, Japan
18 August - Sonic Mania, Makuhari Messe, Chiba, Japan
20 August - Summer Sonic, Osaka, Japan
22 August - Jamsil Olympic Stadium Seoul, South Korea
25 August - August Bank Holiday Weekend, Leeds, England
27 August - August Bank Holiday Weekend, Reading, England
9 September - Dcode festival, Campus del la Ucm, Madrid, España
14 September - Vogue Fashion Night Out, Terrazza Duomo 21, (acoustic show), Milan, Italia
22 September - Reeperbahn festival, Hamburg, Deutschland
7 October - CalJam, San Bernardino, California, USA
29 October - Samhain festival, Weston airport hangar, Dublin, Ireland
30 October - Sse Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland
1 November - Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle, England
2 November - BBC radio Theatre, London, England
7 November - Bethnal Green Working Men's Club, London, England
10 November - Party in the Park, Dubai Media City Amphitheatre, United Arab Emirates
13 November - Warfield Theatre, San Francisco, USA
14 November - The Wiltern, Los Angeles, USA
18 November - Gothic Theatre, Denver, USA
20 November - First Avenue, Minneapolis, USA
21 November - The Riviera, Chicago, USA
23 November - Rebel, Toronto, Canada
25 November - House of Blues, Boston, USA (postponed)
27 November - Terminal 5, New York City, USA
29 November - Lincoln Theatre, Washington DC, USA (postponed)
30 November - Union Transfer, Philadelphia, USA (postponed)
3 December - First Direct Arena, Leeds, England
4 December - The Sse Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland
6 December - Pavilions, Plymouth, England
7 December - Alexandra Palace, London, England
9 December - Sleep in the Park, Edinburgh, Scotland
10 December - Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham, England
12 December - Arena, Birmingham
13 December - Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff, Wales
15 December - Brighton Centre, Brighton, England
16 December - Arena, Manchester, England
30 December - Falls festival, Lorne, Australia
31 December - Falls festival, Marion Bay, Australia
2018
2 January - Falls festival, Byron Bay, Australia
4 January - Enmore theatre, Sydney, Australia
5 January - Forum theatre, Melbourne, Australia
7 January - Falls festival, Fremantle, Australia
12 January - Bitec Bangna Hall 106, Bangkok, Thailand
14 January - Ecopark Convention Centre Ancol, Jakarta, Indonesia
12 February - Radio X rooftop, London, England
23 February - La Riviera, Madrid, España
24 February - Razzmatazz, Barcelona, España
26 February - Fabrique, Milano, Italia
27 February - Granteatro Geox, Padova, Italia
1 March - X-tra, Zürich, Schweiz
2 March - L'Olympia, Paris, France
5 March - Columbiahalle, Berlin, Deutschland
7 March - Ancienne Belgique, Bruxelles, België
8 March - Afas Live, Amsterdam, Nederland
17 March - Lollapalooza festival, Hipodromo de San Isidro, Buenos Aires, Argentina
18 March - Lollapalooza festival, Parque O'Higgins, Santiago, Chile (cut, postponed)
22 March - Lollapalooza festival, Autodromo de Interlagos, Sao Paulo, Brasil
27 March - Parque de la Exposición, Lima, Perú
13 April - Snowbombing, Mayrhofen, Austria, Österreich
10 May - The Masonic, San Francisco, USA
11 May - Greek Theatre, Los Angeles, USA
13 May - Sony Center for the Performing Arts, Toronto, Canada
14 May - Blue Hills Bank Pavilion, Cambridge, USA
16 May - Central Park Summerstage, New York, USA
17 May - Festival Pier at Penn's Landing, Bala Cynwyd, USA
19 May - Lincoln Theatre, Washington, USA
27 May - The Biggest Weekend festival, Coventry, England
8 June - Northside festival, Aarhus, Danmark
10 June - Parklife, Heaton Park, Manchester, England
15 June - Malahide Castle, Dublin, Ireland
16 June - Ormeau Park, Belfast, Northern Ireland
21 June - I-Days Festival, Milano, Italia
23 June - Isle of Wight festival, England
29 June - Finsbury Park, London, England
30 June - Trnsmt festival, Glasgow, Scotland
5 July - Palladium, Köln, Deutschland
8 July - Les Eurockéennes, Belfort, France
10 July - Les Déferlantes festival, Argelès-sur-Mer, France
14 July - Latitude festival, Hanham Park, England
22 July - FIB festival Benicàssim, España
20 July - Vieilles Charrues festival, Carhaix, France
25 July - Stimmen festival, Lörrach, Deutschland
10 August - Sonorama Ribera festival, Aranda de Duero, España
12 August - Sziget festival, Budapest, Hungary
17 August - Rize festival, Hylands Park, Chelmsford, England
18 August - Emirates Lancashire Cricket Club, Manchester, England
24 August - Zürich Openair, Schweiz
25 August - Rock en Seine, Paris, France
15 September - Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix, Marina Bay circuit, Singapore
13 December - Union chapel, London, England
2019
5 June - Hackney Round Chapel, London, England
8 June - Medimex festival, Taranto, Italia
21 June - Metronome Festival Prague, Praha, Česko - Česká republika
23 June - Irish Independent Park, Cork, Ireland
26 June - Eden Sessions, Eden Project, Cornwall, England
29 June - Glastonbury festival, England
4 July - Collisioni AgriRock (literature and wine) festival, Barolo, Italia
11 July - Bilbao BBK Live, Bilbao, España
13 July - Pohoda festival, Trencin airport, Slovensko Slovakia
14 July - Atlas Weekend, Київ Україна, Kyiv Ukrayina
17 July - Moon&Stars festival, Locarno, Svizzera
18 July - The Granaries, Floriana, Malta
27 July - Cap Roig festival, España
28 July - Festival de Carcassonne, France
3 August - Mtv Unplugged, Hull City Hall, Hull, England
10 August - Smukfest, Skanderborg, Danmark
24 August - In the Park 19 festival, Helsinki, Suomi Finland
1 September - Fall in Love festival, București, România (cancelled)
7 September - Gibraltar Calling Festival, Gibraltar
14 September - Peaky Blinders Festival, Birmingham, England
21 September - O2 Ritz, Manchester, England
9 October - Chase Center, San Francisco, California, U.S.A.
16 October - Viejas Arena, San Diego, California, U.S.A.
19 October - T-Mobile Park, Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.
21 October - Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
24 October - Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
11 November - Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff, Wales
12 November - Birmingham Arena, Birmingham, England
14 November - P&J Live, Aberdeen, Scotland
15 November - The SSE Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland
17 November - Utilita Arena, Newcastle, England
18 November - FlyDSA Arena, Sheffield, England
20 November - Manchester Arena, Manchester, England
21 November - M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool, England
23 November - 3arena, Dublin, Ireland
24 November - 3arena, Dublin, Ireland
26 November - Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham, England
28 November - O2 Arena, London, England
29 November - O2 Arena, London, England
6 December - Fortitude Music Hall, Brisbane, Australia
7 December - Fairgrounds festival, Berry, Australia
9 December - Enmore theatre, Sydney, Australia
11 December - Margaret Court Arena, Melbourne, Australia
13 December - Meredith Music Festival, Australia
14 December - Bird in Hand, Adelaide, Australia
17 December - Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle, Australia
18 December - Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle, Australia
20 December - Spark Arena, Auckland, New Zealand
2020
(1 February - Spektrum, Oslo, Norge, cancelled)
2 February - Annexet, Stockholm, Sverige
4 February - Vega, Copenhagen, Danmark
5 February - Sporthalle, Hamburg, Deutschland (interrupted)
7 February - Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, Nederland
8 February - Forest National, Bruxelles, België
10 February - Palladium, Köln, Deutschland
11 February - Tempodrom, Berlin, Deutschland
13 February - Tonhalle, München, Deutschland
15 February - Palazzo dello Sport, Roma, Italia
16 February - Mediolanum Forum, Assago, Milano, Italia
18 February - Gasometer, Vienna, Österreich
20 February - Halle 622, Zurich, Schweiz
21 February - Zenith, Paris, France
12 March - Club Social music festival, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, UAE (postponed for coronavirus)
13->18 April - Snowbombing festival, Mayrhofen, Austria (cancelled)
2 May - Beale Street Music Festival, Memphis, Tennessee, USA
24 May - Boston Calling Music Festival, Harvard Athletic Complex, Massachusetts, U.S.A. (cancelled)
12 June - Heaton Park, Manchester, England (cancelled)
18 June - O son do camiño festival, Santiago de Compostela, España
26 June - Tinderbox festival, Odense, Danmark
3 July - Rock Werchter, België
11 July - Trnsmt festival, Glasgow, Scotland (cancelled)
16 July - FIB festival Benicàssim, España
18 July - Latitude festival, Henham Park, England (cancelled)
19 August - Vital, Belfast, Northern Ireland
20->23 August - Cabaret Vert festival, Charleville-Mézières, France
28->30 August - Reading & Leeds festival, England (cancelled)
17->19 September - Metronome Prague Festival, Praha, Česká republika
19 September Summer sonic, Japan
16->18 October - Shaky Knees Music Festival, Central Park, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
29 October - NHS workers concert, O2, London, Great Britain
2021
19 June - Rock in Rio, Lisboa, Portugal
10 July - Trnsmt festival, Glasgow, Scotland
27 June? - Lucca Summer Festival, Italia
more soon
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Oasisblues copyright © 1994 - 2020

Beady Eye gigography and next tour dates

2000

30 May - Forum, Milan, Italy (the first "Noeless" gig since 1991 when he didn't join Oasis yet)

summer tour without Noel

2003

16 November - Andy Bell unplugged - Debaser, Stockholm, Sweden (bootleg)

2011


3rd & 4th March - Barrowland, Glasgow, Scotland +here and here + bootleg
6th & 7th March - O2 Apollo, Manchester +bootleg 1 +bootleg 2
9th & 10th March - Troxy, London +bootleg 1
13 March - Casino de Paris, Paris, france
14 March - E-Werk, Koln, Germany
16 March - Alcatraz, Milan, Italy +dvd bootleg
18 March - La Riviera, Madrid, Spain +bootleg
19 March - Bikini, Toulouse, france
21 March - Paradiso, Amsterdam, Holland (bootleg)
22 March - Ancienne Belgique, Brussels, Belgium (bootleg)
14 & 15 April - The Olympia Theatre, Dublin, Ireland here a bootleg image
17 April - Ulster Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland
20 April - O2 Academy, Newcastle (a photo here)
23 April - Centre, Newport (photo and bootleg)
30 May - Grosse Freiheit 36, Hamburg, Germany
+a photo here + win tickets here
8 June - Saschall, Firenze, Italy +my story here +bootleg here +win tickets here
11th June - Papillons de Nuit Festival, Saint Lo, france
12 June - Isle of Wight festival +story here and here +interview here +videos here +interview and bootleg here
25th June - Theater of Living Art, Philadelphia, U.S.A.
30 June - Rock Werchter, Belgium (bootleg)
1 July - Main Square Festival, Arras, france +a photo here
7 July - BBK Live Festival, Bilbao, Spain
9 July - Oxegen Festival, Naas, Ireland
26 August - Reading Festival (win tickets) +videos here +review&video here +bootleg here
3 September - AX Hall, Seoul, South Korea
14 September - Twinkle Rock Festival, Taipei, Taiwan
7 October - Atlantico, Rome, Italy +main bootleg here +another bootleg here
+win the concert here
11 October - Volkshaus, Zurich, Switzerland (postponed)
13 October - Gasometer, Vienna, Austria (postponed)
31 October - Theater Caupolican, Santiago, Chile
2 November - Teatro de Verano Ramon Collazo, Montevideo, Uruguay
3 November - Teatro Colegiales, Buenos Aires, Argentina
4 November - Personal Festival, Buenos Aires, Argentina
5 November - Planeta Terra festival, Sao Paulo, Brazil
12 November - O2 Academy, Sheffield
14 November - O2 Academy, Birmingham
17 November - O2 Academy Brixton, London
2 December - The Warfield, San Francisco, U.S.A.
3 December - Wiltern Theatre, Los Angeles, U.S.A. +another complete review here +win tickets here and here
5 December - First Avenue, Minneapolis, U.S.A.
6 December - The Rave Ballroon, Milwaukee, U.S.A.
9 December - Terminal 5, New York, U.S.A.
10 December - House of Blues, Boston, U.S.A.

2012

new tour

2013

3 June - Abbey Road, London (acoustic) +bootleg here
7 June - McClusky's, Kingston (album launch acoustic gig)



8 November - Olympia Theatre, Dublin, Ireland

2014

 

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