Its cover featured arguably the most celebrated and mimicked image in musical history. Indeed, Abbey Road, the 1969 album from The Beatles, has spawned innumerable spoof photos of people imitating the band walking over the now-iconic road crossing. However, the seemingly innocent album sleeve image actually contains a whole host of surprising and shocking secrets that have inspired years of debate – and kept conspiracy theorists perpetuating dark rumors…
1) The accidental cover star
A chance trip to the photo-shoot location of Abbey Road turned an unsuspecting tourist into one of the album’s cover stars, even if he’s only pictured in the background. Spotted on the right of the cover, Paul Cole, an American businessman, was on holiday with his wife when he paused to gawp at “a bunch of kooks,” consequently landing himself in the now-iconic shot.
However, it wasn’t until Cole bought his own copy of Abbey Road a year after its release that he realized he’d been included. “I had to convince the kids that that was me for a while,” he later admitted to Ultimate Classic Rock. “I told them, ‘Get the magnifying glass out.’” Sadly, Cole, of Barefoot Bay, Florida, passed away aged 96 in 2008. Nonetheless, he’ll still always be remembered thanks to his unexpected cover appearance.