Tuesday 18 October 2016


The cover photograph of the Beatles Abbey Road album is one of the most iconic images of pop history.Taken in 1969, it shows the group walking across a zebra crossing.
Led by a white suited John, the Fab Four cross from left to right. Paul, of course, is barefooted.

But there are other versions, including the group crossing the other way, and there are even shots with Paul wearing sandals.
Now these rarely seen alternative takes are being put up for auction in New York next Thursday.
In all there are six photos taken by Iain Macmillan, who only ever made a handful of sets of the images.

For decades Macmillan, who died in 2006, just sat on the negatives, said Nigel Russell, director of photographs with Heritage Auctions, which is conducting the sale.
This set was given to an executive with the Capitol record company, which had the US rights to the Beatles’ music at the time.
It was sold onto a collector who has put them up for sale. The whereabouts of the other remaining sets is unknown.

“It doesn’t appear the rest were sold in a gallery, we think they were given away to others involved in the 1969 recording,” he said.

The pictures were taken on August 8 1969 when the group arrived at their recording studios in Abbey Road.
At around 11.30 a police officer was persuaded to halt traffic while Macmillan put up a stepladder and, having steadied himself, grabbed six quick shots.
It took him all of 10 minutes.
The barefoot image used on the Abbey Road album cover helped launch the notorious "Paul is Dead" conspiracy theory, which quickly became an international phenomenon. 

Since then the Abbey Road walk has been recreated by millions of tourists who make the pilgrimage to London to tread in the Beatles’ footsteps.
The collection which was taken from the uncropped negatives is expected to fetch up to $80,000 (£66,000) when it goes on sale in New York and online via the company’s website, HA.com.

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