It was 50 years ago this Thursday, that The Beatles caused a traffic delay.
John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr lined up and crossed that crosswalk a few times, while a cop held up traffic, right outside the studio where they were already booked to show up for work that day. The whole photo session took only 10 minutes. Yet this became their most iconic image.
And hundreds of fans of the Fab Four gathered today at the same crosswalk in London’s St. John’s Wood neighborhood immortalized on the “Abbey Road” album to recreate the cover photo half a century after it was taken.
At 11:35 am on Aug. 8, 1969, Iain Macmillan photographed John, Paul, George and Ringo striding single-file across the black-and-white “zebra” crossing outside Abbey Road Studios while a police officer stopped traffic.
Used as the cover of the band’s penultimate studio album, it became one of the most famous images in music history.
On Thursday spectators snapped photos on cellphones and lookalikes from a Beatles cover band crossed the street in tribute to the original image.
The spot remains a place of pilgrimage for Beatles fans from around the world.
And 50 years later, the Abbey Road story takes a new turn with the revelatory “Super Deluxe Edition”, which drops on September 27th in time for the anniversary.
It sheds new light on the essential weirdness of this music — how did the Beatles create such warmth and beauty while they were in the middle of breaking up?
“It’s the Last Supper,” producer Giles Martin, son of the late George Martin, told Rolling Stone Magazine. “It’s having great sex with an ex-girlfriend. They said, ‘Let’s do one last great thing.’”
The “Super Deluxe Edition” of group’s last album will include outtakes, demos and angry neighbors complaining about the late-night noise