Hey Jude

Chapter Thirty Five

1968-15 Hey Jude

Is it on yet?

You cut it fine! Bike Sheds?

Yeah, is that David Frost?

Yeah they’re just chatting at the moment, or rather David Frost is trying to be friends with them and The Beatles are joking with him.

The Beatles were in a studio with David Frost about to premiere their first single in almost six months! Blimey they are really getting lazy as they grow up.

We were in the schools multimedia studio. I help run the film club there on Monday’s and showed 16mm films to first and second years after lunch who didn’t have enough money to hang round the Tuck Shop and scoff themselves sick. We had to turn people away when it rained. The films were in colour, which is why they were popular, unlike the official TV for schools programmes which were always in black and white. The Boarders were always begging to be able to watch TV and we were allowed the occasional TV programme. In the main we could see all of two programmes every week which amounted to The Avengers, mostly for the sixth formers, and The Monkees and so mostly attracted first and second years. The Monkees was on Saturday and, as they didnt have any girls to meet in coffee bars, or new records to check out, we left them to it. We couldn’t see Top of The Pops because; well because we couldn’t. Sometimes Bunch and I walked over to the University to watch it in one of their TV lounges, but the students didn’t seem to appreciate how lucky they were, and were always trying to make jokes about how uncouth all the artists were. Students then nearly always wanted to be film directors so saw Pop Groups as raw material, as Antonioni did with the Yardbirds .

The camera zoomed in on a close-up of Paul. he looked us right between the eyes and then sang;

Hey Jude,

He was sitting at an upright piano and brought it in on the second syllable. Incredible, this time he had hooked us with just two syllables and one chord. Mind you a Beatles looking out at us whilst playing live was a new experience for us all and it sent real electricity down our spines. (The Beatles playing live on live TV, weren’t they supposed to have given that up two years ago?).

Don’t make it bad

Take a sad song and make it better

These really were multi-media times that we were living in! Here we all are in a multimedia lab, well a two media lab unless you count the human voice and the chalkboard as well, listening to The Beatles first multimedia single launch. And if you had a BBC2 colour TV it was in a whole new media altogether.

remember to take her

into your heart

Here at Archies we were entering our own multi-media future in black and white, still sitting on school benches, with the Head Boy ready to sling us out the instance the Beatles finished (no excuse of waiting for the National Anthem; hang on weren’t The Beatles with their MBE and Starrs, writing our National Anthem’s now?)

then you can start , to make it better

Hey Jude

Oh nice trick with the guitar, bringing it in like the piano and suddenly John and Paul are re-united and smiling at each other, so obviously an experienced pair live and so relaxed, yet beginning to give a classic performance as though they could knock them out without thinking.

Don’t be afraid

you were made to

go out and get her

I’ve never seen the TV Room so full, the Avengers meet the Monkees upstairs at the end of the science corridor; all twelve of us. The room is in fact a typical science lab with six rows of polished wooden benches, well slabs of wood, tiered so that we can watch experiments on the bench at the front. The TV is set on a wheeled stand parked at the front left of the room, leaving the chalk-board free for us to add our annotations to, but none of us did because we would lose TV access permanently if so.

The room has thick black blinds, which are pulled down so that the picture shines brightly.

the minute you let her under you skin

then you begin

to make it better

Dave is smiling as John’s rhythm guitar lifts the song and now here comes RIngo with a great drum fill, taking it up that little notch as he usually does. We brothers smile across the room acknowledging the eternal verities of Guitars and Drums; this time as the Beatles show that they are still a live band, as well as master artists of the recording studio.

And anytime you feel the pain

Hey Jude refrain

Dont carry the world upon your shoulders

Anyone buying Hey Jude this weekend?

Anthony from the second year owned up to having such plans. We would all be fooled by the sound of Revolution on the B-side and even debated taking the record back to get one where the sound was perfect and not fuzzy.

Cool bring it down the Music Room as soon as you do it’s great

For well you know

that its a fool

who plays it cool

What a brilliant way to start the year.

That’ll probably be the peak of the year, unless the University start booking some decent bands at last.

I’m sure there’ll be some gigs next month once they are all get back.

Let’s go and get a drink at Alcuin on Saturday and see if anything has been organised.

Garnett, have you got a minute?

Yes, sir!

by making his world

a little colder

The Headmasters office was just across from the sixth form study rooms where we had to spend our allocated study hours. As it was the other end of the building from the Music Room our official study time was always deeply frustrating.

I’m just getting the year sorted out for the Boarders. I assume you are happy to continue leading on the Drama Competition? Can I put you down for that, Garnett?

Yes sir, you can out me down for it sir, but on one condition.

So you will do it then, good. He began writing his notes. What’s your condition?

I want to write the play as well as direct it, sir.

Have you written a play before, Garnett?

No sir, but I could hardly be more boring than Saki last year.

We came fourth last year Garnett, that’s about what the boarders are usually capable of, so that seems pretty reasonable to me.

Well sir I’ve lost my best actor, and there is no junior this year capable of giving a strong lead like last year. I was inspired by the visit of the Theatre Royal doing the Wars of the Roses and have several ideas involving using their Theatre Workshop approach. It’s quite fashionable in London, sir.

Is it Garnett?

Yes sir, it is!

Well as long as you get some sort of play together that will be fine; one less thing to worry about on my list.

Thank You Sir! You won’t regret it.

Na na na nan ner na nah!

My heart was thudding away with the excitement of it. Frith was going to let me write a play, my own play! I was being allowed to do something interesting at school! At last!

Oh, and Garnett?

Yes sir?

Good luck, I’m sure you’ll need it

Na na na nan ner na nah!….

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1 Comment

  1. September 13, 2009 at 11:34 am

    […] a single backed by the awesome Revolution. A group at the height of their powers? Sounds like it. Hey Jude was the best selling single of the year globally and remains much loved; much criticised at the […]


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