Got up. Went to work. Came home. Watched telly. Went to bed.

—John Lennon’s diary, January 1969

By the 5th day, the Twickenham sessions had started to become something like a regular job. People would show up and talk about what they’d seen on TV the night before, with George on this specific occasion mentioning “that science fiction thing” — by which he apparently meant a BBC2 show called Immortality, Inc. (thanks again, They May Be Parted) — and an episode of the news show Europa devoted to “The 1969 New Year’s Honours List,” which

once again stamped official and royal recognition on those of us who have given outstanding service. The awards embrace all the British people, from politicians and ambassadors to village postmen and road safety wardens. But how do the great mass of us both here and abroad who will never be honoured regard the baronetcies, the knighthoods, the medals?

Tonight Europa looks at the aspects of pomp and circumstance through European eyes-with a special report from French Television on the investiture this summer of the Prince of Wales.

George didn’t care for it, but at one point there was a musical performance that sparked an idea for a song, which he called a “heavy waltz.”

Of all George’s spiritual and/or preachy songs, this one was probably the catchiest. For once he seemed to have no problem engaging his bandmates’ interest in his new song: The Beatles immediately ran through 41 versions of “I Me Mine.” Well, most of them did; unsure of what he could contribute, John sat out a few takes to waltz with Yoko. In the movie Let It Be, they dance while George, Paul, and Ringo play as a trio.

But after today, “I Me Mine” would not be played again until January 3, 1970, at the penultimate Beatles recording session. As such it earned the distinction of being the last song The Beatles ever recorded (only overdubs were recorded at the following day’s session). John didn’t play on this version either, because he had already quit the band.

And that is a brief history of “I Me Mine,” one of … let’ s see … 52 songs that The Beatles played today, in the midst of both a) planning for the upcoming live performance, at this point still theoretically scheduled for Jan. 20, and b) having an earnest discussion about whether it was time for the band to “divorce.” At this point we have run into a problem that I knew would crop up at some point in this project: There is simply too much going on to deal with it all at any reasonable depth in real time. After years of scraping and clawing for any tidbit of info, suddenly there is an overwhelming deluge of data. I am left with no choice but to punt you over again to They May Be Parted; from their summary page for today, you can wander off in any number of interesting directions.

But I don’t want to sign off before noting a couple other things that were happening in the world today. For one Elvis Presley, on his 34th birthday, was experiencing the first upswing in his career in a decade. In the wake of the Comeback Special reminding people that he existed, “If I Can Dream” would reach #12 in the charts this month. Later in the year he would record the successful From Elvis in Memphis album. He had a little more than eight years to live.

Also celebrating a birthday, his 22nd, was David Bowie nee Jones. After struggling for a seeming eternity, young as he was, David would finally have a breakthrough year in 1969. And it had all started just two days before this, on January 6, when the Times of London published the famous earthrise photo taken by Apollo 8 back on December 24. Inspired by the image of the Earth looking so distant, Bowie began working on a song.

And so his Earth was just beginning to rise, so to speak, as The Beatles’ was fixing to set. Viewed from half a century’s distance, it all seems cosmically correct. Good night, John-Boy.1

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