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January, 16

The Beatles dodged death during road trip car crash terror

The Beatles dodged death during road trip car crash terror

In 1960, a time long before The Beatles had sold more than 500 million albums and dominated the music industry, the band were still building up their fanbase the old-fashioned hard way by gruelling tours across the country. Disaster struck one fateful evening when the band piled into a tour van to travel from London to Liverpool overnight. Paul McCartney explained how the band had gone on the road trip during the height of a snowstorm, and the conditions quickly became a deathtrap.

McCartney recalled: "We were in a terrible, big blizzard, going from London to Liverpool, which we always did. We'd be working in London and then drive back in the van, just the four of us with our roadie, who would be driving. And this was a blizzard. You couldn't see the road."

McCartney revealed how the van's windscreen had broken and the snowfall had left the van with no traction on the road: "At one point, it slid off and it went down an embankment. So it was 'Ahhh!' a bunch of yelling. We ended up at the bottom. It didn't flip, luckily, but so there we are, and then it's like: 'Oh, how are we going to get back up? We're in a van.' Because it was a slope that we've gone down. You couldn't just drive the van back up the slope."

With the temperature plummeting further, the van "out of commission," and no mobile phones, McCartney added that the roadie was left asking: "Oh my god, how am I going to get this?".

Ever the optimists, McCartney revealed the band came up with a motto to keep themselves positive in a hard time. He recalled: "We're all standing around in a little circle, and thinking, What are we going to do? And one of us said: 'Well, something will happen.' And I thought that was just the greatest. I love that, that's a philosophy. And it did."

After the band had found their positivity once again, McCartney explained they dug themselves out of the sticky situation they were in: "We sort of went up the bank, we thumbed a lift, we got the lorry driver to take us, and Mal, our roadie, sorted the van and everything.

"So that was kind of our career. And I suppose that's like how I ended up being a musician and a songwriter: 'Something will happen.' It's so stupid it's brilliant. It's great if you're ever in that sort of panic attack: 'Oh, my God,' or, 'Ahhh, what am I going to do?'"

He also noted that, since the band became stranded in the snow on the side of the road, he has told "quite a few people": "When you're in your darkest moments, just remember that incredibly intelligent Beatles quote: 'Something'll happen.'"

Interestingly enough, McCartney later became embroiled in a conspiracy surrounding a car crash.

In 1966 a vicious rumour began swirling that McCartney was actually dead. The legend went that the Beatle died in a car crash on November 9, 1966, but it was actually covered up by the rest of the band.

Who was the McCartney left in the band, you ask? Well, that was apparently a lookalike, to save the band from splitting up. In 1969 the speculation even got so bad McCartney was forced to address his own life. He told the press: "Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated."

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News archive

  • January

January, 16

The Beatles dodged death during road trip car crash terror.

January, 15

Classical home listening: French song with Roderick Williams; Ennio Morricone’s cinema suites.

January, 15

Brockhampton have announced they are splitting up.

January, 14

96 year-old pianist Ruth Slenczynska signs global record deal with Decca Classics.

January, 12

Drake’s friend took 15 years to return singer’s prized Dave Chappelle DVD boxset.

January, 11

'Send It To Me': Rolling Stones honoured with Royal Mail stamps.

January, 10

Lost footage of The Rolling Stones’ infamous performance at the Californian Altamont festival in 1969 has been published by the Library of Congress.

January, 10

The Pussycat Dolls Claim They Learnt About Their Tour Being Cancelled From Nicole Scherzinger's Instagram.

January, 10

James Mtume, the jazz and funk musician who fronted the group Mtume and produced a number of US chart hits for other artists, has died aged 75.

January, 9

Pussycat Dolls claim they found out about tour cancellation from Nicole Scherzinger’s Instagram.

January, 9

Michael Lang, the co-creator and organiser of Woodstock, has died aged 77.

January, 7

Ella Henderson reunited with Dermot O’Leary on This Morning - ten years after the pair first met on the X Factor.

January, 7

Self-employed professional accordionist Ewan Galloway created ‘The Stagger Inn’ to cater for his regular online show’s growing audience.

January, 6

Roger Taylor has announced some thrilling Queen news that's 40 years in the making and a stunning conclusion to the band's 50th anniversary year.

January, 5

Jason Derulo ‘committed battery’ in Las Vegas altercation.

January, 4

David Bowie's "entire body of work" has been sold to Warner Chappell Music for a deal worth a reported $250 million (£185 million).

January, 4

David Bowie’s estate sells off singer’s back catalogue in deal worth ‘hundreds of millions’.

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