While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Harrison)

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While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Harrison)

George was reading the Chinese book I Ching (the book of changes) when he decided that his songwriting would start to be written based on chance. He took a book off the shelf intending to write a song based on the first words he read, which were “gently weeps”. Eric Clapton plays lead guitar, uncredited

The lost verse

Originally included an extra verse which said, “I look from the wings at the play you are staging/while I’m sitting here doing nothing but aging,” which appear in the demo version found on Anthology 3 as well as Love.


“I wrote “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” at my mother’s house in Warrington. I was thinking about the Chinese I Ching, the Book of Changes… The Eastern concept is that whatever happens is all meant to be, and that there’s no such thing as coincidence — every little item that’s going down has a purpose. “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” was a simple study based on that theory. I decided to write a song based on the first thing I saw upon opening any book — as it would be relative to that moment, at that time. I picked up a book at random, opened it, saw ‘gently weeps’, then laid the book down again and started the song.” – George Harrison


  • George Harrison – lead vocals, backing vocal, acoustic guitar, Hammond organ
  • John Lennon – electric guitar with tremolo
  • Paul McCartney – harmony vocal, piano, bass guitar
  • Ringo Starr – drums, tambourine, castanets
  • Eric Clapton – lead guitar

Release history

Notable covers

  • Jeff Healy Band (from Hell To Pay)

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