On May 26, 1967, one of the most amazing things happened in the world of music, the album "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band", which is considered by many to be the best rock album of all time, was released.
This is the Beatles' eighth album, which for years was ranked first on "Rolling Stone" magazine's 500 greatest albums of all time.
The album is a milestone in the music world and has had a huge impact on many bands and artists.
After the Beatles' members decided in 1966 to completely stop performing live, they were able to spend more time in the studio, studying, researching, and experimenting, with diverse musical instruments, different music styles, special sound edits, and state-of-the-art recording techniques.
The goal was to create an album that is a complete and comprehensive work of art, as opposed to a collection of individual songs.
It is important to emphasize that this is not yet a pure concept album in the full sense of the word, except for the theme song that returns at the end of the album (in the penultimate song) and a small hint in the song "With a Little Help From My Friends", there is no real connection between the songs on the album.
Here are some interesting facts about the album:
1. The initial idea came from Paul McCartney, after writing the theme song that opens the album. The song portrays the Beatles as another "imaginary" band called Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club.
2. The name of the album came from small packets of salt and pepper that were handed out to the band members during the meal, with the caption 'S' and 'P' on them. McCartney was asked by the band's executive director what it meant and replied: "salt and pepper" and then "Sergeant Pepper".
4. The recording of the album took 5 months and required about 700 studio hours. Just to clear the ear, the Beatles' first album was recorded in less than 10 hours.
5. The songs "A Day In The Life", "With a Little Help from My Friends" and "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" were not included in the album version released in South Asia, Malaysia, and Hong Kong, due to concerns that these songs addressed and encouraged drug use.
6. The end of the song "A Day In The Life" includes a sound that only dogs can hear.
7. In the song "A Day In The Life" Lennon and McCartney took two songs and merged them together using the symphonic section recorded by 41 musicians. The connection point, after the words "I'd Love To Turn You On," is deliberately meant to sound like an orgasm. Due to that, the song was boycotted on BBC.
8. The first part of the song was influenced by two newspaper headlines that John Lennon read, one in the Daily Mail and it is the story of the car accident of Guinness heiress Tara Browne who was a member of the band and who introduced McCartney to LSD. Second, a headline from the Daily Express about 4,000 holes counted on the Blackburn freeway.
9. The last chord E of the song was recorded by three pianos that the band members played simultaneously. It took 9 takes to get the desired result.
10. Although the album's official release date was June 1, 1967, it was released on May 26 in the UK and June 2 in the US.
11. The song "Good Morning Good Morning" was influenced by a Kellogg breakfast cereal commercial. At the end of the song, a recording of various animals is heard. At Lennon's request, the order of appearance of the animals is according to their size.
12. The song "When I'm Sixty-Four" was originally intended to be a B-side to the song "Strawberry Fields", but was replaced with "Penny Lane".
13. The songs “Strawberry Fields” and “Penny Lane” were the first recorded in sessions for the album. They were supposed to be part of the album, but eventually were cut out and released as singles.
14. This is the first album in the history of music in which the lyrics were printed on the back cover.
15. The audience cheers between the songs "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" and "With A Little Help From My Friends" were recorded by producer George Martin at one of the band's Hollywood Bowl performances.
16. McCartney's bass playing was recorded separately from the rest of the instruments throughout the album. This allowed him more room to improvise and find special melodies.
17. During the sessions, the song "Only a Northern Song" by George Harrison was also recorded, but it did not eventually enter the album.
18. The album cover was created by Peter Blake and Jann Haworth, for which they won the Grammy Award.
19. The album won 5 other Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year.
20. Lennon initially asked that both Jesus and Adolf Hitler appear on the cover, but this did not happen.