Today in History: The Beatles release ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’

Saturday, June 01, 2024

On June 1, 1967, the Beatles released “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” for years considered by many to be the greatest rock ‘n’ roll album of all time.

The release date of ”Sgt. Pepper”–June 1, 1967–was a red letter day for the millions of Beatles fans around the globe. They had never waited so long for a new product from their heroes. It had been 10 months since their last release, ”Revolver.” (The group`s first seven British albums had been issued approximately six months apart and American record labels had been able to reproduce and distribute all of the early material within 2 1/2 years.)

So high were the fans` expectations and so euphoric was their mood on that day 20 years ago that, as Philip Norman wrote in his book ”Shout! The Beatles in Their Generation,” ”There are to this day thousands of Britons and Americans who can describe exactly where they were and exactly what they were doing at the moment they first listened to `Sgt. Pepper`s Lonely Hearts Club Band.` That music, as powerfully as Kennedy`s assassination or the first moon landing, summons up an exact time and place, an emotion undimmed by time or aging. The memory is the same to all–how they first drew the shining disc from its gaudy sleeve; how they could not believe it at first and had to play it all through again, over and over.”

Two decades later, Capitol Records is hoping to rekindle the world`s passion for ”Sgt. Pepper” with the compact disc release Monday. As the most technologically advanced format for recorded music, the compact disc offers superb clarity to the listener–a property that is perfectly showcased by



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