George Martin Was ‘Embarrassed’ During 1 Groundbreaking Beatles Recording Session 

In 1967, The Beatles and producer George Martin gathered in the studio to record the song “A Day in the Life.” They were far from the only people in the studio that day. In their typical fashion, the band invited many of their contemporaries to join them as they recorded the song. According to one of the many people present, Martin seemed embarrassed by the spectacle.

George Martin seemed embarrassed as The Beatles recorded a song

David Puttnam, who was a friend of The Beatles, was present at the “A Day in the Life” recording session. He admitted that many of his experiences with the band were chaotic.

“From the moment they started meeting to make the film [Magical Mystery Tour], there are fantastic stories of total lunacy,” Puttnam said in the book All You Need Is Love: The Beatles in Their Own Words by Peter Brown and Steven Gaines. “You hire a caterer, and you tell him there’s going to be one hundred meals and one thousand people would turn up, and then it would be hysteria because there wasn’t a thousand meals and no one had told the caterer.”

One particularly eventful day was the recording of “A Day in the Life.” People like Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Marianne Faithfull, and Michael Nesmith were present.

“I walked in on the recording of ‘A Day in the Life,’” Puttnam said, adding, “I remember it was lunacy. I looked at George Martin, and he went [shrugged]. He was embarrassed. There were a lot of people there, a hell of a lot of people.”

Still, Puttnam was impressed. There were cameras present in the studio, and he believed it was a very advanced idea to film a recording session. 

The Beatles invited many other artists into the studio for another song

The Beatles had a similar crowd in the studio with them when they recorded “All You Need Is Love.” The song, which they wrote for the first live global television program Our World, featured the backing voices of many of their contemporaries. 

Jagger, Faithfull, and Richards were in the studio with them again. Other artists, like Keith Moon, Eric Clapton, and Graham Nash also joined them. 

“You can see the happy faces. I had Keith Moon next to me,” Ringo Starr said in The Beatles Anthology. “Everyone was joining in — it was a fabulous time, both musically and spiritually.”

The Beatles usually acted poorly when George Martin wasn’t around

While Martin felt a bit embarrassed by the spectacle, he would have felt worse about the band’s behavior when he wasn’t around. 

“As it happened, George Martin was out sick with food poisoning the night we began work on [‘Yellow Submarine’]; he sent his secretary, Judy, along to keep an eye on things while I took the helm,” Geoff Emerick wrote in his book Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of the Beatles. “George’s absence clearly had a liberating effect on the four Beatles — silliness that George Martin would not have tolerated — so rehearsals took up a lot more time than the session itself.”

The band struggled to keep themselves together without Martin’s authority.

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