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1967, March

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 31, 1967
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 31, 1967

Studio Two, EMI Studios, in London

"With A Little Help From My Friend" and "Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite!" were mixed into mono during this 7:00 pm - 3:00 am session, the latter only after overdubbing of another organ part and a glockenspiel.

 

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 30, 1967
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 30, 1967

Studio Two, EMI Studios, in London

Before the 11:00 pm to 7:30 am session. the Beatles went to Chelsea Manor studios in Flood Street, Chelsea, to pose for the splendid Michael Cooper shots which would adorn Peter Blakes sleeve design, and also the inside gatefold display, of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely He...

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 29, 1967
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 29, 1967

Recording: Good Morning Good Morning, Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite!

With A Little Help From My Friends

The sound effects for Good Morning Good Morning, assembled on the previous day, were added to the song during this session.

The effects were dubbed onto the vocal track of the tape. After t...
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 28, 1967
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 28, 1967

Recording: Good Morning Good Morning, Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite!

John Lennon recorded a second lead vocal for Good Morning Good Morning on this evening, following a first attempt on February 16, 1967. Lennon harmonized with himself during parts of the song.

A second reduction mix combined ...
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 27, 1967

The Beatles are taking a small break from recording today

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 26, 1967
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 26, 1967

The Beatles in-between recording at EMI Studios in London

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 25, 1967

Top 10 Song Chart for March 25, 1967

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 24, 1967

The Beatles in-between recording at EMI Studios in London

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 23, 1967

Studio Two, EMI Studios in London

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 22, 1967

Studio Two, EMI Studios in London

Overdubbing of two more dilruba parts and another sword-mandel part onto George's "Within You, Without You", played by the same musicians on March 15th, Amrat Gakjjar, P.D. Joshi and Natver Soni, respectively. A reduction mixdown then took one into take two and a r...

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 21, 1967

Recording, mixing, editing: Getting Better, Lovely Rita

This session saw work continue on two Sgt. Pepper songs: Getting Better and Lovely Rita. It was perhaps more notable for being the one time when John Lennon took LSD in the recording studio.

Visitors to the studio on this occasion included m...

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 20, 1967

Studio Two, EMI Studios in London

The Beatles deliberately kept themselves very much to themselves during the recording of Sgt. Pepper, so an interview by John and Paul to their old mate Brian Matthew this evening was certainly an important coup for BBC Radio. Underlining the Beatles new workshop use of Abbey Road, Brian Matthew had to interview them there - the first time any of the Beatles consented to this - the session recording sheet logging the interview "Beatle Talk" and showing that it was taped at the start on the 7:00 session.

Mathew's purpose was two-fold. He recorded John and Paul's acceptance speech for three 1966 Ivor Novello awards - for Yellow Submarine and for Yesterday. These speeches were broadcast by the BBC Light Program on March 27th. The event was otherwise recorded live, before a music industry audience, at the Playhouse Theatre in London on March 23rd. John and Paul had no wish to attend so their three statuettes were received on their behalf by NEMS' Tony Barrow and by Ron White, the general manager of marketing services at EMI Records. After each presentation, the relevant "Thank You" speech by John and Paul was played over the PA (and dropped into the program), following which the song was performed live at the playhouse by Joe Loss and his Orchestra. (the lead vocal on "Michelle" was sung by Ross MacManus, father of Declan, aka Elvis Costello.

Up to 1970, John and Paul won several Ivor Novello awards too, in presentation ceremonies, also broadcast by BBC radio, but they never again recorded a special interview, nor did they receive the awards in person. George Martin and Dick James accepted them on their behalf and made short speeches. The secondary visit of Brian Matthew's visit to EMI studios this evening was to record a brief addtional interview with John and Paul for exclusive use by the BBC's Transcription service in its weekly best of Top Of The Pops, sold by subscription to overseas stations. It was only a brief interview, for which precisely four minutes were used, although John and Paul had ample time to explain the Beatle's change in direction towards recording and away from touring- John in particular being emphatic about there being no more concert tours, succinctly saying that there be no more "She Loves You".

 

After the interview, John and Paul devoted the remainder of the session to "She's Leaving Home", overdubbing vocals onto take nine (a reduction of the previous night's take one). This lovely song was now complete because there were no overdubs of any of the Beatles playing an musical instrument: the only music playing on "She's Leaving Home" was the strings. The recording was then mixed onto mono before the close of play at 3:30 am.

Source: The Complete Beatles Chronicle -Mark Lewisohn

 

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 19, 1967

Another day in-between recording at EMI Studios in London

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 18, 1967

The Beatles in-between recording at EMI Studios in London

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 17, 1967

Recording: She’s Leaving Home

Recording began on the Sgt. Pepper song She's Leaving Home during this session.

The song had been written after Pau McCartney read a report about a teenage runaway named Melanie Coe in the 27 February 1967 edition of the Daily Mail newspaper. John Lennon contributed ...
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 16, 1967

Penny Lane - Number One this week!

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 15, 1967
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 15, 1967

Recording: Within You Without You

Although they had recorded George Harrison's song Only A Northern Song on February 13th and 14th, 1967. The Beatles decided not to include it on the Sgt. Pepper album. In its place, work began during this session on another Harrison song, the Indian-flavoured Within You Without You.

At this early stage the song was known as Untitled; Harrison often had trouble deciding on names for his songs, and working titles were often used instead.

The song had been written at the London home of Klaus Voormann, a friend to The Beatles since their Hamburg days. Harrison had composed Within You Without You on a harmonium.

Several musicians - their names undocumented - were recruited from the Asian Music Circle, a collective based in Fitzalan Road in Finchley, north London. They were joined by Harrison and The Beatles' assistant Neil Aspinall on tamburas.

Although it was recorded as one piece, the song was referred to as having three parts during the recording. Following rehearsals, the basic track for Within You Without You was recorded in one take during this session, and lasted 6'25".

The tamburas were recorded onto track one of the four-track tape. Track two contained tabla and svarmandal, and track four had a dilruba playing the main melody.

Within You Without You was a great track. The tabla had never been recorded the way we did it. Everyone was amazed when they first heard a tabla recorded that closely, with the texture and the lovely low resonances.
Geoff Emerick

Overdubs were added on March 22nd and April 3rd. None of the other Beatles appeared on the song.

Also present in the studio on this occasion was artist Peter Blake, who had been commissioned to work on the cover artwork for Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

George was there with some Indian musicians and they had a carpet on the floor and there was incense burning. George was very sweet - he's always been very kind and sweet - and he got up and welcomed us and offered us tea. We just sat and watched for a couple of hours. It was a fascinating, historical time.
 
Source: The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions, Mark Lewisohn
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 14, 1967

Released as a double A-sided single with “Strawberry Fields Forever” on the flip side, “Penny Lane” was the 13th U.S. #1 single for The Beatles and the first Beatles song release in the U.K. Both songs were recorded during the sessions for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and never included on an official original Beatles album release.

Both songs were written about actual places in the band’s hometown of Liverpool. Paul McCartney wrote “Penny Lane” in response to Lennon’s “Strawberry Fields” (though both are credited to the Lennon/McCartney team). Both the street itself and particular sites along it mentioned in the song are actual places, and the name was also assigned to a bus shelter on a roundabout where the members of The Beatles often passed through in their youth.

The song in fact began many years earlier with notes McCartney took about the barber’s shop and woman selling poppies while waiting at the bus stop for Lennon. The shelter itself would later become a restaurant named Sgt. Pepper’s, one of a number of businesses along the street and in Liverpool to take their cue from The Beatles. The city has also in recent decades sought to encourage the lane as an alternative business and commerce district.

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 13, 1967

Paul McCartney meets Linda Eastman

On this evening The Beatles' manager Brian Epstein hosted a dinner party to mark the completion of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Afterwards Paul McCartney went to the Bag O'Nails nightclub to see Georgie Fame performing. At the club McCartney had his first encounter with his future wife, Linda Eastman.

The Bag O'Nails was situated in the basement of 9 Kingly Street in Soho, London. The Beatles were regular visitors, particularly in 1967 and 1968, and McCartney had his own private table there.

The night I met Linda I was in the Bag O'Nails watching Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames play a great set. Speedy was banging away. She was there with the Animals, who she knew from photographing them in New York. They were sitting a couple of alcoves down, near the stage. The band had finished and they got up to either leave or go for a drink or a pee or something, and she passed our table. I was near the edge and stood up just as she was passing, blocking her exit. And so I said, 'Oh, sorry. Hi. How are you? How're you doing?' I introduced myself, and said, 'We're going on to another club after this, would you like to join us?'

That was my big pulling line! Well, I'd never used it before, of course, but it worked this time! It was a fairly slim chance but it worked. She said, 'Yes, okay, we'll go on. How shall we do it?' I forget how we did it. 'You come in our car' or whatever, and we all went on, the people I was with and the Animals, we went on to the Speakeasy.

Paul McCartney
Many Years From Now, Barry Miles

The Speakeasy was a club on Margaret Street, where they heard Procol Harum's A Whiter Shade Of Pale for the first time.

We flirted a bit, and then it was time for me to go back with them and Paul said, 'Well, we're going to another club. You want to come?' I remember everybody at the table heard A Whiter Shade Of Pale that night for the first time and we all thought, Who is that? Stevie Winwood? We all said Stevie. The minute that record came out, you just knew you loved it. That's when we actually met. Then we went back to his house. We were in the Mini with I think Lulu and Dudley Edwards, who painted Paul's piano; Paul was giving him a lift home. I was impressed to see his Magrittes.

Linda McCartney
Many Years From Now, Barry Miles

 

The pair met again four days later, on May 19, 1967, when Eastman attended the press party for Sgt Pepper at Brian Epstein's house at 24 Chapel Street, London.

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 12, 1967

The number one song in the US on March 12, 1967 was Penny Lane by The Beatles.

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 11, 1967

The Beatles in-between recording at EMI Studios in London.

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 10, 1967

Recording: Getting Better

This was the second recording session for the Sgt. Pepper song Getting Better.

The work had been mixed down to one track at the end of the previous day's session. The tape was then filled with Ringo Starr's snare and bass drums on track two, Paul McCartney bass guitar on...
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 9, 1967

Recording: Getting Better

The Beatles began recording a new Sgt. Pepper song during this session: Getting Better.

The group recorded the song's rhythm track in seven takes. Paul McCartney's rhythm guitar and Ringo Starr's drums went onto track one of the tape, and McCartney's guide vocals were on...
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 8, 1967

The Beatles in-between recording at EMI Studios in London.

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 7, 1967

The Beatles in the recording studio (Studio Two, EMI Studios, London). Additional overdubs are recorded for Lovely Rita, including harmony vocals, effects, and the ending percussive sound of a piece of toilet paper being blown through a haircomb. The session begins at 7:00 p.m. and ends at 2:30 a.m.

At the Bluecoat Chambers, in John Lennon’s hometown of Liverpool, Yoko Ono performs a “Concert of Music for the Mind.” The following day, she lectures to Liverpool College of Art students. “There are never any sounds at my concerts,“ she explains to them, “because the real music is in people’s minds.”

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 6, 1967

Recording, mixing: Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

Studio Two, EMI Studios, Abbey Road

Although The Beatles had finished the music for the song Sgt. Pepper's Lonely HEarts Club Band on March 3, 1967, it still wasn't complete. During this session they added sound effects to give the impression...

The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 5, 1967

The Beatles in-between recording at EMI Studios in London.

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 4, 1967

The Beatles were in-between recording at EMI Studios in London

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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 3, 1967

Recording, mixing: Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds

Studio Two, EMI Studios, Abbey Road

The brass overdub for the song Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band was recorded during this session, and Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds received its final mono mixes.

The B...
The Beatles - A Day in The Life: March 2, 1967

Studio Two, EMI Studios, London

"Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" was one of the quickest Sgt. Pepper recordings, one night from the rhythm track, another for overdubs. This 7:00 pm to 3:30 am session took care of the latter, with a succession of vari-speeded vocal and instrument recordings being add...

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