Recording "Blue Jay Way"

Friday, October 6, 1967 • For The Beatles

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the Magical Mystery Tour (US LP - Mono) LP.
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

Songs recorded


Blue Jay Way

Written by George Harrison

Recording • SI onto take 3


Musicians on "Blue Jay Way"

Ringo Starr:
Peter Willison:

Production staff

George Martin:
Geoff Emerick:
Richard Lush:
Second Engineer


On September 6, 1967, The Beatles recorded the basic track of “Blue Jay Way,” which was George Harrison’s contribution to the “Magical Mystery Tour” soundtrack. The following day, on September 7, the band overdubbed lead vocals and backing vocals.

On this day, during a session that started at 7 pm and ended at midnight, they completed the recording of the track.

There was a free track available on the four-track tape of Take 3 at the end of the September 7 session, which was then filled with a cello and tambourine overdub. Ringo Starr played the tambourine part, while Peter Willison played the cello and received a payment of £27 for his contribution.

The fixer who arranged string players for lots of Beatles sessions was Sid Sax. He died in 2005. [… Peter Willison, a cellist my dad shared a flat with in St John’s Wood in the mid-to-late 1960s, remembers returning home at about 10 p.m. on 6 October 1967 after a concert at the Albert Hall and getting a call from Sax, telling him to drive to Studio Two at Abbey Road, immediately, for an all-night recording of what turned out to be ‘Blue Jay Way’. Peter arrived at the studio still wearing tails. At 27, he was about the same age as the Beatles. ‘They didn’t really have a clue what they were doing,’ Peter told me. ‘There were no other musicians. There was no music stand and no music. George Martin asked me to listen to the track and just play along. We experimented a bit. Finally at 4 a.m. we were finished.’ Could he remember my dad playing on any Beatles tracks? He couldn’t.

From Adam Smyth | A Day in the Life · LRB 24 December 2020

I was playing at the Albert Hall beforehand and arrived at the studio after 10. As I was in tails Ringo said I didn’t have to dress for them. There were no other musicians there, no music stand and no music. George Martin asked me to listen to the track and just play along. We experimented a bit and finally at 4 am we were finished.

Peter Willison – From 6 October 1967 – UK, Studio Two, EMI Studios, Abbey Road – Blue Jay Way – Beatles and Solo Photos Forum (

Following the recording sessions, “Blue Jay Way” was mixed in mono on October 12 and November 7, 1967, and in stereo on November 7, 1967.

Last updated on May 7, 2023

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