February 10th 1967. The Beatles gather in Studio One, EMI Studios, Abbey Road, to record the orchestral overdub of ‘A Day in the Life. 40 musicians were asked to start playing the lowest note on their instruments and gradually go up to the highest note.
Some of the musicians had played on Beatles sessions before, Alan Civil played French Horn on For No One, and David Mason had played trumpet on Penny Lane.
The Beatles wanted to create a party atmosphere in the studio and invited along many friends. They included Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones, Marianne Faithfull, Donovan, and Mike Nesmith of the Monkees. The musicians were asked to come in evening dress, but were also give party hats, false red noses and other weird things to wear. One of the violinist played with a huge Gorilla paw!
Tony Bramwell was asked to film the session for a proposed TV special about the making of Sgt Pepper. He bought along many cameras, and gave them to the guests to film anything that happened. The resulting film became the ‘A Day in the Life’ video.
BTW, the day after the recording session, Mick Jagger, Marianne Faithfull, and George and Patti Harrison went down to Redlands, Keith Richards home in Sussex, for a party. On February 12th the police raided the party and Mick and Keith were arrested on drugs charges, and subsequently jailed, before finally being released on appeal. George and Patti had left the party before the raid took place. Allegedly, because they weren’t on the police ‘hit list’ at the time, the police waited until after they’d left to carry out the raid.