The Beatles – Penny Lane

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Two days after recording some overdubs for ‘A Day In The Life’, The Beatles spent the afternoon in East London at Angel Lane, Stratford, filming scenes for the video of ‘Penny Lane’ with Scandinavian director, Peter Goldmann.

Shortly after the East London shoot, Goldmann and The Beatles headed to Knole Park, the grounds of a stately home in Kent, to film scenes of the band horse-riding in the countryside. Around this time, Goldmann and his crew (but minus The Beatles) travelled to Liverpool to shoot the sequences near to Penny Lane.

A few days before filming started for ‘Penny Lane’, Goldmann shot a promo for ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’. Both shoots presented a challenge for everyone involved owing to the Musicians’ Union ban on any action that could be construed as miming. Despite these limitations, both the films Goldmann made were so innovative that neither would have looked out of place on MTV a decade and a half later.

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Lyrics:

Penny Lane there is a barber showing photographs
Of every head he’s had the pleasure to know
And all the people that come and go
Stop and say “Hello”

On the corner is a banker with a motorcar,
And little children laugh at him behind his back
And the banker never wears a mac
In the pouring rain, very strange

Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes
There beneath the blue suburban skies
I sit, and meanwhile back
In Penny Lane there is a fireman with an hourglass,
And in his pocket is a portrait of the Queen
He likes to keep his fire engine clean,
It’s a clean machine

Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes
A four of fish and finger pies
In summer. Meanwhile back
Behind the shelter in the middle of the roundabout
The pretty nurse is selling poppies from a tray
And though she feels as if she’s in a play,
She is anyway

In Penny Lane the barber shaves another customer,
We see the banker sitting waiting for a trim,
And then the fireman rushes in
From the pouring rain – very strange

Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes
There beneath the blue suburban skies
I sit, and meanwhile back
Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes
There beneath the blue suburban skies
Penny Lane!

Songwriters: John Lennon / John Winston Lennon / Paul Mccartney / Paul James Mccartney
Penny Lane lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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