Musical Artists and Groups
George Tipton’s Story?
#1 - George Tipton’s Story?
JamesB - 2 Years Ago

Just out of curiosity, I'm looking for more information about Nilsson's relationship with George Tipton. I was kinda disappointed to see their friendship was mostly ignored in the Shipton's book. Tipton seems like an important part of Nilsson's story that hasn't properly been told. He's largely responsible for sound of the first three RCA records and most of you probably know that Tipton used his life savings to pay for one of Nilsson's (and his) first recordings on Tower. Nilsson stopped working with Tipton in 1971, probably because he wanted a new sound. It seems that Tipton never spoke to Nilsson again. He also refused to speak about him, so I've never seen anyone report Tipton's side of their spilt. These are the things I wonder about:

1) What was that communication like when Nilsson left Tipton? A telegram? A phone call? Face to face? What was said? Why did Harry want to end their working relationship? Was it just about music?

2) Why was Tipton so angry with Harry? I get feeling hurt and betrayed, but he would never speak about Harry again. That's pretty extreme. Did he imagine himself and Nilsson as a Lennon/McCartney partnership? Did he feel like Harry owed him, since he invested in Harry when no one else would? Did he feel he deserved to join Harry on his assent into stardom? Did he hate the new Richard Perry sound that Nilsson wanted?

3) Nilsson's shame about the break up of his second marriage has been well documented. Did Nilsson ever struggle with shame about his break up with Tipton, and for that matter, Jerard? These were Nilsson's good friends and earliest supporters, but he left them both to work with other producers, and never contacted them again. I can imagine that Nilsson may have felt guilty about treating good friends this way, even if he felt he had to for his music. Could this bad friend guilt be part of Nilsson's psychological makeup in the early 70s?

#2 - George Tipton’s Story?
Roger Smith - 2 Years Ago

I've been researching Harry Nilsson for more than twenty years and I haven't been able to learn much about George Tipton other than the basic biographical info that's on this web site.

I'm not sure how much we can assume that there was a major falling out between Harry and George. While they didn't work together after Nilsson Schmilsson, Harry spoke highly of Tipton in his final interview. And I can't find any interviews with Tipton at all. So, he may have just had an aversion to interviews in general.

But Harry did have a propensity for alienating people close to him. I've heard from several people who knew Harry, were hurt by Harry, but still said they loved him anyway. Although I never spoke with either of them, I assume Rick Jarrard and Richard Perry are in that group. Although they had falling outs with Nilsson, they both participated in the Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him?) documentary.

Harry Nilsson was really a larger-than-life character in many ways.