On This Day - June 1st

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Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band is the eighth studio album by English rock band the Beatles. Released 1st June 1967, it spent 27 weeks at number one on the UK Albums Chart and 15 weeks at number one in the US.

It was lauded by critics for its innovations in production, songwriting and graphic design, for bridging a cultural divide between popular music and high art, and for providing a musical representation of its generation and the contemporary counterculture. It won four Grammy Awards in 1968, including Album of the Year, the first rock LP to receive this honour.

Recording of the album took place at Abbey Road Studios in North West London, beginning in November 1966 and finishing in April 1967 with open-ended recording sessions often running late in the night. A total of 700 hours or recording time logged with mixing taking place over the course of three weeks. The final cost of Sgt. Pepper was around £25,000 (equivalent to more than £425,000 today). In comparison, the recording of their first album in 1963, Please Please Me, took around 20 hours and cost £400.

On his experience of recording the album, Ringo Starr said "The biggest memory I have of Sgt. Pepper's is I learned to play chess."

Track Listing

Side 1

  • 1. "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"
  • 2. "With a Little Help from My Friends"
  • 3. "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds"
  • 4. "Getting Better"
  • 5. "Fixing a Hole"
  • 6. "She's Leaving Home"
  • 7. "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!"

Side 2

  • 1. "Within You Without You"
  • 2. "When I'm Sixty-Four"
  • 3. "Lovely Rita"
  • 4. "Good Morning Good Morning"
  • 5. "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)"
  • 6. "A Day in the Life"

The front of the LP included showed the Beatles, in costume as the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, standing with a group of life-sized cardboard cut-outs and waxworks of famous people. In front of the drum is an arrangement of flowers that spell out "Beatles". The final cost for the cover art was nearly £3,000 (equivalent to over £50,000 today), an extravagant sum for a time when album covers would typically cost around £50. For their work on Sgt. Pepper, the designers Peter Blake and Jann Haworth won the 1968 Grammy Award for Best Album Cover, Graphic Arts.

Today's question is this — in addition to the four Beatles who stood in for the photo, how many famous people were featured on the front cover?

Here's the answer...

The cover features 57 photographs and nine waxworks — including four of the Beatles themselves.