This last known photo of John Lennon and Paul McCartney together was taken by John Lennon’s girlfirend May Pang at the Louis B. Meyer/Peter Lawford Santa Monica house Lennon was renting around March 1974.
Pang’s book of photographs, Instamatic Karma, was published in 2008. Besides the candid personal portraits, the book contains some historically important photographs, such as Lennon signing the official dissolution of The Beatles partnership, and the last known photograph of Lennon and Paul McCartney together.
Here’s a picture of Pang’s book and another photo of John and Paul taken that day with Keith Moon in between them. That photo was part of a collection of Moon’s memorabilia auctioned off in 2000..
Pang answered some questions about the meeting…
How did the final Lennon-McCartney photo come about?
“It was during the Harry Nilsson sessions. He had popped in (the studio) the night before. . . . The next day, Paul came over with Linda and kids in tow. Everybody’s just hanging out at the Santa Monica beach house. Everyone’s just talking, just relaxing.”
Were you at that studio jam the night before?
“I was playing tambourine with Mal Evans. . . . All of a sudden I looked up and said, “Paul?” John turned around and said, “Oh, hello, Paul.” It was like they’d seen each other just the night before. John hadn’t seen him in a couple of years at that point. Then Paul’s heading to the drums; he just went to Ringo’s drum kit and started to jam. Stevie Wonder happened to drop by. Stevie’s on the electric piano, Linda’s on the Hammond B3. . . . Everybody was just hanging out and jamming.”
Here is a bit more info on the house the picture was taken at…
625 Palisades Beach Road
Santa Monica, CA 90402
It was owned by the actor Peter Lawford who bought it from Louis B. Mayer, Lawford continued the tradition by hosting fellow Hollywood luminaries as well as his brothers-in-law, John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy, on many occasions. Allegedly, Marilyn Monroe had been a frequent visitor, which greatly piqued John Lennon’s interest.
When John decided to produce Harry Nilsson’s Pussy Cats album, he thought it would be a great idea to have everyone who was working on it living under one roof. John and I took the master bedroom. When we first saw it, he said: “So, this is where they did it,” referring to JFK and Monroe. The other five bedrooms were occupied by Keith Moon, Harry, Klaus Voormann (the artist who had designed the cover for The Beatles album Revolver) The library, complete with official portrait of President Kennedy on the wall, was converted into a bedroom for Ringo Starr.