John Lennon and George Harrison didn’t always get along, but Harrison craved Lennon’s attention early in their relationship. He used to follow Lennon around, even though he could sense that Lennon was embarrassed by him. He looked up to Lennon, so he would show up at his house uninvited and tag along on Lennon’s dates. Lennon’s future wife, Cynthia Powell, burst into tears when Harrison showed up in her hospital room after she had her appendix removed.
George Harrison thought John Lennon was embarrassed of him
Harrison joined the Quarrymen with Lennon and Paul McCartney before The Beatles. Harrison was younger than them, which Lennon didn’t appreciate.
“George was the youngest, and it was obvious,” author Tony Bramwell said, per the book George Harrison: Behind the Locked Door by Graeme Thomson. “He looked very young, even younger than his years. John Lennon didn’t particularly like him and didn’t want him in the band. He regarded him as too young, a kid, but Paul was pushing for him.”
Harrison could sense that Lennon found his presence embarrassing.
“I think [John] did feel a bit embarrassed about that because I was so tiny,” he said. “I only looked about ten years old.”
He went to the hospital when Cynthia Lennon had her appendix removed
Harrison admitted that he was “very impressed” by Lennon. Because his bandmate didn’t reciprocate the feeling, Harrison had to work hard to get his attention. He would arrive at Lennon’s house unannounced, which Lennon didn’t appreciate.
“He came round once and asked me to go to the pictures with him but I pretended I was busy,” Lennon said. “I didn’t dig him on first sight.”
He was so dedicated that he invited himself along on Lennon’s dates with his future wife, Cynthia. When she went to the hospital to have her appendix removed, Harrison went along too. When she realized, she burst into tears.
Tom Petty thought George Harrison wanted John Lennon’s acceptance
Time in The Beatles was difficult on Lennon and Harrison’s relationship. Harrison felt overlooked by McCartney and Lennon. After the band broke up, Lennon complained that Harrison didn’t mention him enough in his memoir. Harrison responded by saying that this sort of response demonstrated one of Lennon’s greatest faults: the inability to notice anyone outside of himself and McCartney.
Still, people who knew Harrison recognized that he admired Lennon, even after their fighting in The Beatles.
“He loved the Beatles,” his friend Tom Petty told Rolling Stone, per The Petty Archives. “He used to b**** sometimes about individual Beatles who got on his nerves. But he really loved them down deep, and I knew this. I think that a lot of George’s personality was formed by John. This is just a guess, but that was the way it appeared to me. He looked up to John so much. He said, ‘Oh, John would be a Wilbury in a second.'”