George Harrison said, “Shyamsundar! Hare Krishna! Hey, what a great surprise. It’s really good to see you.”
“Well, Prabhupada just happened to be passing through New York. He’s over at the Brooklyn temple, and I –” Chris O’Dell waves from across the room. “Hare Krishna, Chris! How’re ya doin’! Anyway, George, I heard you were in town. What’s this all about?”
“We’re puttin’ on a charity concert. It was Ravi’s idea. For the Bangladesh refugees. You know, they’ve been hit by cyclones, war. They’re in real bad shape over there. We’ve got Madison Square Garden booked for August 1. Two shows. Will you be around?”
“Yeah, we’re heading over to London on the second.”
“Great, I’ll get you a seat.”… Madison Square Garden, August 1, 1971, Concert for Bangla Desh, 2 p.m. matinee show: George walked onstage, and after twenty thousand fans gave him a five-minute standing ovation, he looked down at Bhavananda and me in our front-row-center seats, grinned, and greeted us with a soft “Hare Krishna.” What followed was one of the great rock music spectacles of our time.