- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 1, 2001

Music fans here and in New York reacted yesterday to George Harrison's death from cancer with a mixture of resignation, sadness and, for some, surprise.
The youngest member of the Beatles, characterized by fans as the "quiet one," Harrison was not as flashy as his band mates. Still, his passing caused many longtime music fans to stop and grieve.
"It might explain why I've been slow all day," said Mitch Brown, 39, general manager of Kramer Books in Dupont Circle. He wasn't referring to his store's pace of business, but to himself. "I'm not tired, just moving slow all day."
Mr. Brown, familiar with Harrison's fight with cancer, said of his death: "I kind of knew it was coming. That doesn't make it any better, but. …"
Lonnie Menase, 45, shared his sentiment. "It's a sad situation, losing a talented artist," he said. "But I guess that's how life is," he said. Mr. Menase is manager at the Melody Record Shop in Dupont Circle.
"We grew up with Beatles music everyone in my generation and it has a strong affect on you," he said.
In New York, people gathered before dawn yesterday in Central Park to pay homage to Harrison in a part of the park dubbed "Strawberry Fields," in remembrance of John Lennon. He was the first Beatle to die, when he was shot by a deranged fan in 1980.
Robby Vorhaus, 39, stopped by the growing memorial in Central Park on his way to work yesterday. "He meant so much to so many people," Mr. Vorhaus said. "He made us see things that were there but we couldn't see."
One fan in New York was overcome. "I just got over John Lennon's death and it's been 21 years and now George," said a teary-eyed Robert Gladstone, 48. "George was a very honest human being. I loved him. … I didn't know him, but I loved him."
Nevertheless, back in the District there were some who were unaware of Harrison's passing. "Really? I didn't know he died," said Ari Waring, a self-styled "revolutionary artist" from Asheville, N.C.
"I didn't even hear about it," said Sean Dibble, 35, a salesman at BooksAMillion in Dupont Circle. "We've been in the store all day with no TV."
Praise for Harrison assumed a political dimension for some.
"Conservatives should forever appreciate George Harrison," said Stephen Moore of the anti-tax advocacy group Club for Growth. Mr. Moore cited Harrison's composition "Taxman" a hit for the Beatles in 1966 which he called "our anti-tax anthem."
The Harrison song criticized high taxes in Britain, which had a 95 percent top rate at the time: "There's one for you, 19 for me. … Should five percent appear too small, be thankful I don't take it all."
Writing in National Review Online, Mr. Moore said, "George was one of the first supply siders."
Younger Washingtonians seemed less affected by Harrison's death. "It really wasn't that unexpected," said Zeke Holt, 23, a clerk at Melody Record Shop. "He didn't die in the prime of his life or have his life tragically taken from him. You mourn his passing but don't get bogged down in the sorrow of it all. You see it as an opportunity to celebrate him instead of mourning all the time."
At Kramer Books, Mr. Brown said younger people probably wouldn't feel much effect from Harrison's death. "It's like an old legend dying, instead of someone you grew up listening to. It'd be like me going, 'Oh, Glenn Miller died. That's terrible.'"
This article is based in part on wire service reports.

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