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The Beatles - A Day in The Life: October 24, 1969

Since the hoax about Paul being dead first surfaced in print back in September (in the Times-Delphic, the newspaper of the Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa), it quickly snowballed. It was featured on the Detroit radio station MKNR. Towards the middle of October it had broken across the Atlantic.

The Beatles were contacted by reporters trying to get an answer. Paul hady travelled to his Scottish farm on October 22nd, and Peter Brown called him to ask for a statement that could be given to the press. McCartney gave a line borrowed from Mark Twain: "Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated."

A reporter from New York's WMCA, Alex Bennett, arrived in London on the following day and interviewed Ringo Starr, Derek Taylor, Neil Aspinall, photographer Iain Macmillan, McCartney's tailor and barber, and members of Apple group White Trash. Starr told the Bennett: "If people are gonna believe it, they're gonna believe it. I can only say it's not true."

Then on October 24th, McCartney agreed to speak to the BBC's Chris Drake. The interview took place at McCartney's High Park Farm in Campbeltown, Scotland. McCartney suggested that the stories had begun as he had adopted a lower public profile recently. He said that he once did "an interview a week" to keep in the headlines, but since getting married and becoming a father he preferred to live a more private life.

He was firm in denying he had died, saying: "If the conclusion you reach is that I'm dead, then you're wrong, because I'm alive and living in Scotland." Linda McCartney said their holiday was being ruined by the press speculation, adding that "everybody knows he's alive". Talk then turned to the subject of McCartney's farm, which he admitted was scruffy. He said he had been dubbed "the new Laird" when he first met his Scottish neighbours, but didn't want to be considered the "squire of the district". He concluded the interview by saying that The Beatles had no plans to reconvene in the near future, having recently completed an album and film, and that he may not return to London until 1970.

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