The Beatles FAQ

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1967

The Beatles Story - 1967

Free of the demands of touring, The Beatles creative energy goes into the recording studio into making records. The period August 1966 to August 1967 is perhaps their most productive. Revolver (1966) is followed by Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields and the musically revolutionary ‘Sergeant Pepper’.

Summer of Love

In 1967 The Beatles radically change their image. Their suits disappear. They grow their hair much longer. Moustaches appear for Sergeant Pepper. The influence of Indian mysticism and music is becoming increasingly apparent.

The Beatles were both leaders and followers of the newly emerging alternative culture. They helped popularise ‘hippy’ clothes and attitudes.  But their ‘summer of love’ begins unravelling in August.

On August 7, George Harrison visits the famed Haight Ashby 'hippy heaven'. He is shocked by the drug-fuelled debauchery he encounters.

Later in the month all four Beatles travel to the unlikely setting of Bangor, North Wales for a weekend studying transcendental meditation with an Indian mystic, the Maharshi Yogi. This is brought to an abrupt end on Sunday August 27 when their meditation is interrupted by shocking news.

Brian

Throughout 1967 Brian Epstein has been struggling with the The Beatles new direction. Without touring he has little to do. He increasingly relies on medication to relieve depression and insomnia.   


On August 27, 1967 Brian dies of an accidental prescription overdose.
See newsreel of Beatles (clearly in a state of shock) reacting to the news.


The news comes while The Beatles are in Bangor, North Wales. He is preparing to study transcendental meditation with an Indian mystic, the Maharshi Yogi. They came out to talk to reporters still clearly in a state of shock.


After Brian

‘When Brian died,’ John later said, ‘we knew we were in trouble.’  


Paul tries to organise the band. He creates a new project, the TV film, Magical Mystery Tour. The others resent his leadership.

Magical Mystery Tour is broadcast on Boxing Day, 1967. The critics hate it. For the first time in five years a Beatles project is not a complete success. But the soundtrack album still contains a number of classic tracks including The Fool on the Hill, Magical Mystery Tour, I am the Walrus, Baby Your a Rich Man


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