It was written by George Harrison , the band's lead guitarist, and is widely viewed by music historians as having marked his ascendancy as a composer to the level of the Beatles' principal songwriters, John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Two weeks after the album's release, the song was issued on a double A-side single, coupled with " Come Together ", making it the first Harrison composition to become a Beatles A-side. The pairing was also the first time in the United Kingdom that the Beatles issued a single containing tracks already available on an album. While the single's commercial performance was lessened by this, it topped the Billboard Hot in the United States as well as charts in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and West Germany, and peaked at number 4 in the UK. Due to the difficulty he faced in getting more than two of his compositions onto each Beatles album, Harrison first offered the song to Joe Cocker. As recorded by the Beatles, the track features a guitar solo that several music critics identify among Harrison's finest playing. The song also drew praise from the other Beatles and their producer, George Martin , with Lennon stating that it was the best song on Abbey Road. Harrison subsequently performed the song at his Concert for Bangladesh shows in and throughout the two tours he made as a solo artist. By the late s, it had been covered by over artists, making it the second-most covered Beatles composition after " Yesterday ". Shirley Bassey had a top-five UK hit with her recording, while Frank Sinatra regularly performed the song.
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Something like fluoride, which is too small for normal filters, yanks away that feeling of agency. But I think Steve Austin has to team up with a Japanese holdout to stop a nuclear bomb from going off or something. It was something ineffable and harder to define: freedom of speech.
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