Let It Be: The Let It Be album was the 12th and last album of The Beatles. It was originally intended to be released before Abbey Road album during mid-1969 as “Get Back”, but the Beatles were unhappy with this version and it was temporarily shelved. It was released on 8 May 1970 by the band’s Apple Records label shortly after the group announced their break-up.
Concept: McCartney believed in live performance as a source of creative energy. He suggested that they reject the multilayered artifice, parodies, game-playing studio work (Sgt. Pepper, White Album) and get back to their roots as a live rock ‘n roll band.
The 5th Beatle: Afro-American pianist Billy Preston has been referred to as the fifth Beatle.Preston was the only artist to receive joint credit on a Beatles single, on ‘Get Back’. He played on various songs of the Let It Be Album.
Frustrations: The recording sessions did not run smoothly as The Beatles were not getting along anymore. McCartney assumed the role of the leader, while a laid back Lennon was more interested in spending time with his soon-to-be wife Yoko Ono, who was now present in the studio with him at all times. All of the factors led to friction within the band.
Rooftop: Under that frustration came the crazy idea to do a concert on the roof above the Apple offices. At the time no one realised that that would be the last time The Beatles would ever perform together (Youtube). An event which stopped traffic in surroundings and ousted politics to make the lead story on lunchtime TV newscasts.
Film: A film crew observed The Beatles from a “fly on the wall” perspective and made a documentary about the making of an album. The film is famous for showcasing a number of conflicts between the group members and has frequently been referred to as a documentary showing “the break-up of a band”.
Break-up: On top of that Lennon took it upon himself, without the rest of the band knowing, to off-load the task of finishing the album to Phil Spector, an American producer who was famous for his “wall of sound”. Especially McCartney was deeply dissatisfied with Spector’s treatment. After hearing the result McCartney announced that The Beatles no longer existed.