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A Hard Day's Fright

Pattie Boyd recalls 'terrifying' Beatles fans


For Pattie Boyd, loving a Beatle was "Something," but their fans were something else.

The model and photographer met George Harrison on the set of "A Hard Day's Night" in 1965, married him a year later and inspired his timeless love song on 1969's "Abbey Road" album. But the public didn't always share their love story, which ended in divorce in 1977.

Boyd, now 74, remembers one "absolutely terrifying" experience at a London theater, where the Beatles were wrapping up a performance shortly after she met Harrison.

"George told me that I should leave with my friends before the last number," Boyd, 74, recalls in a Harpers Bazaar interview with freelancing superstar Taylor Swift. "So before the last song, we got up from our seats and walked toward the nearest exit door, and there were these girls behind me. They followed us out, and they were kicking me and pulling my hair and pushing us all the way down this long passageway."

The unruly fans also told Boyd how they felt about her: "We hate you."

Fortunately, Boyd reports, that kind of vitriol has vanished over the years.

"It was such a long time ago, and the fans haven't held on to the same antagonistic feelings toward me," says Boyd, who was also the muse for two classic hits by second husband Eric Clapton, "Layla" and "Wonderful Tonight."

"Actually, they seem happy that I'm sharing the photographs I took. One time I was having an exhibition, and these girls turned up dressed like me in 'A Hard Day's Night.'"

It was "adorable," Boyd says, a far cry from the kicking, hair pulling, and hate mongering that marred her first encounter with Beatles fans.

All you need is love.

Photo by Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images