On August 8, 1969, photographer Iain Macmillan was given just a few minutes to photograph the Beatles for their ‘Abbey Road’ album cover.
While a policeman held up traffic, Macmillan, standing on a stepladder positioned in the middle of the road, took six shots as the group walked across the zebra crossing just outside the studio.
The photo selected by Paul McCartney has turned into one of the most iconic album covers of all time.
Shortly after the album’s release, the cover became part of the “Paul is dead” theory that was spreading across college campuses in the U.S. According to followers of the rumor, the cover depicted the Beatles supposedly walking out of a cemetery in a funeral procession.
The procession was led by John Lennon, dressed in white, as a religious figure, Ringo Starr, dressed in black, as the undertaker, McCartney, out of step with the others, as a barefoot corpse, and George Harrison, dressed in denim, as the gravedigger.
The left-handed McCartney was holding a cigarette in his right hand – indicating that he was an impostor – and the number plate on the Volkswagen parked on the street is 28IF, meaning McCartney would have been 28 if he had lived (albeit incorrect as McCartney was only 27 at both the time of the photo and subsequent release of the record).
Streamingoldies had its own Abbey Road “moment” in 2010 when my nephew and his family posed for this photo.
What does that famous crosswalk look like today?
Click the link below to see it LIVE!