On 30 January 1969, the Beatles performed an unannounced concert from the rooftop of their Apple Corps headquarters at 3 Savile Row, within central London’s office and fashion district. Joined by keyboardist Billy Preston, the band played a 42-minute set before the Metropolitan Police asked them to reduce the volume. It was the final public performance of their career.
Although the concert was conceived just days before, the Beatles were planning a return to live performances throughout the early sessions for their album Let It Be (1970). They performed nine takes of five songs as crowds of onlookers, many of whom were on their lunch break, congregated in the streets and on the roofs of local buildings. The concert ended with the conclusion of “Get Back”, with John Lennon joking, “I’d like to say thank you on behalf of the group and ourselves and I hope we’ve passed the audition.”
Footage from the performance was used in the 1970 documentary film Let It Be and the 2021 documentary series The Beatles: Get Back. The first performance of “I’ve Got a Feeling” and single takes of “One After 909” and “Dig a Pony” were also featured on the accompanying album. On 28 January 2022, the audio of the full rooftop performance was released to streaming services under the title Get Back — The Rooftop Performance.
In February 2022, Disney released the entire concert sequence as presented in The Beatles: Get Back in IMAX as The Beatles: Get Back – The Rooftop Concert. It had a limited theatrical engagement.
Ringo said: “It was a memorable day for me – we were doin’ what we did best – making music. But I am still disappointed the policemen didn’t drag me off me drums!”
This was their final public performance.