Why George Harrison Was Scared Of The Beatles Fans

Imagine being a worldwide known star with hundreds of thousands of fans all around the world who are ready to take every risk just to see your face. It sounds pretty flattering, but that’s not always the case. Considering that artists like John Lennon and Dimebag Darrell died at the hands of their fans, it seems like having die-hard fans can sometimes be scary.

The Beatles were among those bands with an enormous amount of fans everywhere in the world. With their impact on the music industry, 1960s counterculture, and songs that represented the era’s youth and sociocultural movements, they managed to be the leading figures of their time. As their popularity grew, fanaticism surrounded them.

Dubbed Beatlemania by the press, the obsession with the Beatles was characterized by high levels of hysteria, high-pitched screams, and deity-like worship. To protect themselves from the fans, the band often traveled in an armored car. Beatlemania was so frustrating at times that they couldn’t hear their voices during the shows. As a result, the Beatles decided to stop touring.

Although having such committed fans sounds great, it seems like it sometimes made George Harrison scared. In a 1964 appearance on the TV show Roundup, Harrison said that it made him scared when thousands of fans waited for them while getting in and out of somewhere. However, he added that it was okay if only six or seven fans were coming to greet them.

Asked whether Beatles fans frightened him, George Harrison said the following:

“Only times when getting in and out of places when there are thousands of them altogether, but when you usually only meet about the most six or seven if you’re running along the road. Then there’s not enough of them to make you frightened.”

In 1979, long after the Beatles’ breakup, George Harrison joined Rolling Stone and looked back on his career with the Beatles. According to the guitarist, fans used them as an excuse to use substances and get high, and they were the victims of this. Moreover, Harrison added that their fanbase didn’t think of their well-being at all.

In his interview, Harrison touched upon fans’ desire to see more of the Beatles by saying:

“That was enough for me; I don’t have any desire to do all that. It might have been fun for everybody else, but we never saw the Beatles. We’re the only four people who never got to see us [laughs]. Everybody got on a trip, you see; that was the thing.

We were just four relatively sane people in the middle of the madness. People used us as an excuse to trip out, and we were the victims of that. That’s why they want the Beatles to go on, so they can all get silly again. But they don’t consider our well-being when they say, ‘Let’s have the Fab Four again.’”

So, it appears like George Harrison felt anxious upon seeing thousands of Beatles fans waiting for them to get off the car or wait at the door for their return. Considering the hysteria surrounding them, it’s not a surprise Harrison was scared a lot. Sadly, he turned out to be right when John Lennon was murdered by a Beatles fan.