Having begun work on it six months previously, The Beatles finally finished John Lennon’s ‘I Want You (She’s So Heavy)’ on this day. It was also the final occasion on which all four members of the group were inside the Abbey Road studios together.
The day was divided into two separate sessions. The first took place between 2pm and 6pm in the control room of studio three. An edit brought together the 22–23 February recording of I Want You (She’s So Heavy) made at Trident Studios and the 18 April version made at EMI.
The 18 April version was used for the first four minutes and 37 seconds. From then on it cut to the Trident version, ending at 7’47”. The abrupt full-volume cut at the end was requested by John Lennon during this session.
We were putting the final touches to that side of the LP and we were listening to the mix. John said ‘There! Cut the tape there’. Geoff [Emerick] cut the tape and that was it. End of side one!
The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions, Mark Lewisohn
From 6pm until 1.15am the following morning The Beatles worked in the control room of studio two, putting together a version of the album’s running order. At this time the songs from the eventual b-side were at the beginning of the album, and the order of ‘Oh! Darling’ and ‘Octopus’s Garden’ was switched around.
Although there were subsequent recording, editing and mixing sessions, for both Abbey Road and Let It Be, this was the last time in which The Beatles were together inside the studio. They all knew that Abbey Road would be their final recording, and after this date there was little need – or desire – for them all to be together in the building where so much magic happened since 6 June 1962.
Also on this day...
- 2009: Paul McCartney live at Cowboys Stadium, Dallas
- 1968: Recording, mixing, editing: Yer Blues, Mother Nature’s Son, Etcetera, Wild Honey Pie
- 1966: The Beatles’ Cincinnati concert is postponed
- 1965: Live: White Sox Park, Chicago
- 1964: Live: Convention Center, Las Vegas
- 1963: Live: Gaumont Cinema, Bournemouth
- 1962: Live: Majestic Ballroom, Crewe
- 1961: Live: Hambleton Hall, Liverpool
- 1960: Live: Indra Club, Hamburg
Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.