Originally titled The Concert for Bangla Desh – is a live triple album by George Harrison and celebrity friends, released on Apple Records in December 1971 in America and January 1972 in Britain. The album followed the two concerts of the same name, held on 1 August 1971 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, featuring Harrison, Bob Dylan, Ravi Shankar, Ali Akbar Khan, Ringo Starr, Billy Preston,Leon Russell and Eric Clapton. The shows were a pioneering charity event, in aid of the homeless Bengali refugees of the Bangladesh Liberation War, and set the model for future multi-artist rock benefits such as Live Aid(1985) and the Concert for New York City (2001).
Dylan’s appearance at the 1971 Madison Square Garden concert, organized by George Harrison and Ravi Shankar to bring relief to the then-new country of Bangladesh following massive floods, was only a hopeful rumor until the moment he stepped onstage for the first of two shows. The performance marked a long-awaited return to live performance after his several-year seclusion following a motorcycle accident, and the largely acoustic set proved him just as powerful and poignant in the Watergate era as he was in the turbulent ’60s. For all the participating stars — Harrison (who hadn’t performed in concert since the Beatles quit touring in 1966), Shankar, Eric Clapton, Leon Russell, andRingo Starr, among others — Dylan’s presence brought the concerts to a higher level, which was a key in the resulting three-disc LP’s win for Album Of The Year.