August 8, 1969 – an important day to Beatles fans around the world. It was the day that the photo shoot for the famous Abbey Road cover took place. The photographer was Iain MacMillan, the setting was in front of Abbey Road Studios in London, and the subjects were John, Paul, George and Ringo.
As simple a cover as it was, the visual image has left an indelible mark on Beatles fans from generation to generation, with thousands visiting the site every year. Fans gather in front of Abbey Road Studios waiting to make their way across the Abbey Road crosswalk made famous by The Fab Four.
Another ingenious idea thought up by The Beatles? Well, it wasn’t intended that way.
As Ringo Starr revealed in an interview in 2008 on HBO’s Off the Record, the idea for the Abbey Road cover came about as a last resort.
“The Beatles, we always sat around the studio with these big ideas… we’re going to do the cover and we’re going to go to Egypt, or we’re going into some volcano. We’re going to do this big thing, and then, ‘Oh, sod it, let’s just walk across the road.’ And that’s what we did!*“We always came up with these big ideas — get in a plane, pack a bag… oh, God, let’s just walk over there. And it’s like, ‘Oh, look at what they thought of.'”
A small exhibit of the original six photos shot for the cover are featured in a new exhibit at Snap Galleries in London. Beatles and Bystanders: The Abbey Road sessions will be on display through May 28, 2011, and the complete set of six photos is available for purchase.
Snap Galleries has also posted an online catalog showing the photos. The photos are analyzed revealing some mystery bystanders who appear in the series of photographs.
For more information, visit Snap Galleries official website.
For more Beatles news, follow Daytrippin’ on Twitter.