Paul McCartney films Jane Asher in Denver

Paul McCartney and Mal Evans had flown to the United States on 4 April 1967, to surprise Jane Asher on her 21st birthday. Afterwards they spent several days together.

In the morning Evans took McCartney’s camera to be repaired at a shop in Denver, Colorado, where they were staying. After returning the mended camera to its owner he went to the Civic Center park where he spent some time at the Greek amphitheatre.

In the afternoon McCartney filmed Asher walking among trees. It was on this day that he had the idea for a television special, which subsequently became the Magical Mystery Tour project.

I used to do a lot of amateur filming and from my interest in that it was a very small step for me to say, ‘Well, if we hired a film cameraman and we told him where to shoot, then we’re starting to film, aren’t we? As long as we know that we want to go over Westminster Bridge backwards, he’ll be able to do that. I can convey it to him.’ So, the idea tumbled together that we’d hire a bus, take a bunch of people out and start trying to make up something about a magical mystery tour.

It used to just be called a mystery tour, up north. When we were kids, you’d get on a bus, and you didn’t know where you were going, but nearly always it was Blackpool. From Liverpool, it was inevitably Blackpool and everyone would go, ‘Oooo, it was Blackpool after all!’ Everyone would spend time guessing where they were going, and this was part of the thrill. And we remembered those. So much of the Beatles’ stuff was a slight switch on a memory; in Penny Lane, the nurse and the barber and the fireman were just people we saw on a bus route, but this time they’d be with us. So we’d always just heighten the reality to make a little bit of surreality. That we were interested in.

Paul McCartney
Many Years From Now, Barry Miles
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