The photograph above is what I call “The One That Got Away.” It’s a rarely-seen picture of Beatle George Harrison with his first wife, Pattie Boyd, shot by Henry Grossman on the occasion of the couple’s 1966 wedding. They both look young and fab. I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Pattie Boyd — photographer, former model, and rock-and-roll muse — for an article that will run in the July/August issue of American Photo. We just sent the piece to the printer. Alas, this picture didn’t make the final mix — so I’m posting it here. (More about Pattie Boyd below.)
What’s more remarkable is that in the photo world, nearly four decades after they disbanded, the Fabs — as Harrison sardonically called them — are still going strong. Never mind what John Lennon sang in 1970: For those of us who can’t get enough of it, the dream still ain’t over.
Recent reports reveal that Christie’s is to offer Lennon’s lyrics for “Give Peace a Chance” — plus never-published photos from the 1969 Montreal Bed-In staged by Lennon and wife Yoko Ono — for auction this summer, with early estimates between £200,000 and £300,000. The pictures, by UK-based comedy writer Gail Renard, had a unlikely beginning: Renard and a companion befriended John and Yoko after requesting an interview for their university magazine. This led to series of rare bed-in shots including the one at right. Lennon also signed and presented Renard the hand-written lyrics to his peace anthem, saying, “One day they will be worth something.”
Meanwhile, the two surviving ex-Beatles, Paul and Ringo, recently showed up for the opening of an exhibit of platinum prints of Linda McCartney photographs at the James Hyman Gallery in London, on view until June 7. (Presumably McCartney is more pleased these days about revisiting memories with his first wife than with his second one.)