Today George Harrison and Ravi Shankar filmed a second scene in Big Sur, this time surrounded by a gaggle of groovy (mostly) young people.

You’d have to think Ringo was around somewhere, but I haven’t been able to spot him in the crowd. Maybe that’s him in disguise at 2:02?

The other half of The Beatles had a busy and productive day at the studio. First Paul was filmed listening to a playback with Apple recording artist Mary Hopkin; the footage would be used for an Apple promo film. The film crew also caught a couple minutes of Paul working on his new song:

The audio there was obviously added later. According to The Beatles Bible, there is also a 41-minute audiotape of today’s session in circulation. I haven’t been able to find it, but TBB gives a blow-by-blow here. Among the highlights:

  • The early rehearsals of “Blackbird” feature both Paul and John on acoustic guitars; then “McCartney continues playing alone, singing in an Elvis style and ad-libbing a talking blues.”
  • George Martin makes various suggestions for an arrangement, but John insists that vocals and guitar will suffice, then reverses himself and suggests a brass band. This idea, probably for the best, does not take root.
  • At one point Paul can be heard singing a new piece he’s been playing around with, called “Helter Skelter,” in a falsetto voice.

In all they ran through 32 takes of “Blackbird” that day, of which only 11 were complete. Take 32 was judged to be the keeper and several mono mixes were made. The birdsong sound effects would not be added until several months later.

As if that wasn’t enough, John also continued to gather sound effects to be used in “Revolution 9,” which would be assembled … let’s see … 9 days hence. Oh, perfect; let’s end right there.