Over the gate...

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Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Abbey Road: August 8, 1969.

Having achieved the, by that point, mildly improbable feat of all making it to EMI by around 11am, they decided to sit on the steps en masse for a bit, taking advantage of the rare summer weather, whilst photographer Iain Macmillan fiddled with his apertures.
These photos are new to me, and therefore I assume, in my swaggeringly insouciant fashion, new (possibly) to some of you too. A few other candid moments from that morning swill around on t'internet, and so let's add to those with these:

Thus, so legend has it, having sat their collective fill, at precisely 11.35am, out they strode onto that fabled zebra-crossing-of-dreams. (What is this fuc*ing drivel?) At around 11.34am, however, shortly before striding out onto that fabled zebra-crossing-of-dreams, Paul (and possibly John) bollocked Macmillan for not having fiddled with his apertures sufficiently, or something:

(Or not.) It's accepted that there were six shots en-zebra-crossing-of-dreams, in the following sequence; 1-3

And 4-6, with 5 being, clearly, the best, and thus, the sleeve:

Now. I don't think we can say there was actually a 7th, as this isn't quite a sleeve contendah, but I can say, with swaggering insouciance, that there was a point 5th:

So 0.5: note the relative position of the red vehicle compared with 1:

It's always (not literally - that would be ridiculous) intrigued me that these photos were taken whilst Manson's cohorts slithered (not literally - that would be ridiculous) towards Cielo Drive.
We have much to thank Linda McCartney for (and I am being serious for once), including these great photos, tracked down by Guus Limberger - and many thanks to him too.


  1. Wow! Where did these pics come from?! These are great!

  2. Marvellous post, brilliant post, well done.

  3. AMAZING PIX!!! To think I was home in Hampstead, a couple of tube stops away, with no idea that all that was going on!

  4. The one on the steps with,whoever?,behind was in "John" issue of Club Sandwich,Jan 81?,but the ret v G.
    Except on the PAul directing,Ian Mc or Linda,he and Georges expressions are qute unsettling.

    LB No other "EMI scruffs" or tourists expected them out at this "early" Beatle time!


  5. That's Alan, Ringo's driver all in black behind them. And you're right, stephenmcg, we wouldn't think of going there that early. Maybe Paul's house, but not the studios. And there's Linda's handbag in front of John (it has her initials, L. L. E.).

  6. Ringos driver!!I thought it was one of the infamous Hells Angels from Apple.

    The one who punched Stig..no that was Valerie (c E Idle)


  7. Where do you reckon this one would fit in the sequence?

  8. db...that one is for sure a few steps away from the cover shot. paul with ciggie in hand.

  9. Great amazing photos. Why am I thinking that a fan also took some snaps that day? I seem to remember seeing some (somewhere..)