Who 'didn't notice that the lights had changed?
He blew his mind out in a car
He didn't notice that the lights had changed
A crowd of people stood and stared. They'd seen his face before
Nobody was really sure. If he was from the House of Lords
A Day in the Life (Lennon & McCartney)
While John Lennon was composing his section(s) of A Day in The Life, he had a copy of The Daily Mail of 17th January 1967 open at the piano. This directly inspired the opening line.
I read the news today, oh boy. About a lucky man...
Lennon had a particular interest in the news that day through a personal connection to one of the stories. This concerned the coroner’s report on the death of an Irish socialite, Tara Browne.
The Beatles had all known the young Guinness heir socially. He was a friend of Paul's brother, Mick and very close to Brian Jones of The Rolling Stones. The barbed reference to his wealth and privilege ('luck man') hints at an ambivalent attitude on the writer's part.
On December 18 1966 Browne died in a car crash. He had driven his sports car through a red light at high speed (over 100 mph) in South Kensington. This had then crashed into a lorry, killing the driver instantly.
Paul McCartney later denied that his contribution to A Day in the Life had any connection to Browne, but conceded that John may have been referring to the accident.
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