FACT! The Beatles' Penny Lane Video NOT Shot In Penny Lane
As the classic single reaches the grand old age of 50, we discover the shocking truth about the promotional clip for the track.
Can it really be half a century since The Beatles put away their moptops and went WEIRD?
It sure is. On 17 February 1967, the band released a double A-sided single that signalled a brand new era for The Fab Four and changed the face of music forever.
Not only was Strawberry Fields Forever and Penny Lane a sonically-ambitious single, paving the way for the release of the momentous album Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band later that year, but it was also accompanied by a pretty nifty promotional video.
The film for John Lennon’s Strawberry Fields was suitably vague and psychedelic, filmed on a cold January day in a field in Kent, while the video for Paul McCartney’s classic Penny Lane featured the Fabs walking around the streets of Liverpool in a tribute to the Merseyside locale of the title.
Only they weren’t filmed in Liverpool at all.
Nope, despite the authentic shots of a green Liverpool corporation bus with the destination of “Penny Lane” on the front, the clips of John Lennon walking down the street to the surprise of passers-by, then meeting up with his bandmates were actually filmed in East London!
Angel Lane in Stratford, to be exact. The red London buses in the background are the giveaway - as you can see from the film, Liverpool buses were a luscious GREEN.
The footage was shot on Sunday 5 February, as The Beatles were too busy at Abbey Road putting the finishing touches to the recording of A Day In The Life to bother heading all the way up to Liverpool.
It’s movie magic of the finest kind. Happy 50th birthday to one of the greatest singles of all time!