What was the impact of SGT PEPPER at the time it was released?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by thestereofan, Sep 25, 2015.

  1. bherbert

    bherbert Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Africa
    A question for the forum members who heard it in 1967:

    Do you remember how it felt when you heard A Day In The Life and that final chord for the first time? Did you get goosebumps?
     
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  2. HfxBob

    HfxBob Forum Resident

    I don't know about goosebumps, but I know at the time I thought was hearing something totally new and epic and thrilling.
     
  3. Culpa

    Culpa Forum Resident

    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    I don't know. I had actually gone looking for this one, from '77, but found that one first.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Culpa

    Culpa Forum Resident

    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    I gotta say, "real singles" or not, my copies of I'll Cry Instead/I'm Happy Just To Dance With You and Slow Down/Matchbox got played an awful lot in my house in 1964.
     
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  5. drbryant

    drbryant Forum Resident

    No, I clearly remember articles quoting disappointed fans, but if you want to say they were non fans, that’s fine. I’m not going to look it up. It’s not that important to me.
     
  6. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing

    Location:
    Maine
    Summer. 1967. I'm 16. Rubber Soul and Revolver were unparalleled. But Pepper's--A mind blowing mind trip, and yes...the last chord of "A Day In The Life"?...wow. Unlike anything we'd ever heard before. Still is. Timeless. Of course we had no idea of the historical significance of all the music that came from 1967--and the Golden Age. It was just so amazing.

    If I had to pock one one word: AWE!
     
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  7. stanlove

    stanlove Forum Resident

    I think a lot of the answers are hyperbole and revisionist history. It was not the biggest thing ever as some will have to believe. It was big like all Beatles releases but it was not like this one stood out over all others. My Guess is if you ask the same question about a few other Beatles releases you would get the same answers.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2018
  8. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing

    Location:
    Maine
    Right, and most had little square screen tellies, maybe 16 to 24" screens...a pretty boring way to watch a magical mystery tour in B&W, or anything really...especially boring for those psychedelic landscapes viewed out the magic tour bus windows. If it had been released to movie theaters I wonder if it would have been as panned. Especially the musical numbers that are pretty cool to view nowadays on the big screen TVs. (oh and don't forget those crappy little (most had) one speaker televisions. Horrible audio. )
     
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  9. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing

    Location:
    Maine
    Rubber Soul and Revolver, yes, but Pepper's was really different. WOW for me. The Beatles generally were a phenom and a "wow"...sure.

    But then we were a bit used to WOW! albums in 1964-1967!
     
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  10. HfxBob

    HfxBob Forum Resident

    I was there and I disagree with your statement. The buildup to this album was unprecedented. And when it arrived, it lived up to the hype. Everything about it was something completely new and wild-the title, the album cover, the concept, and of course the music itself. This was truly psychedelic even without any drugs involved.
     
  11. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing

    Location:
    Maine
    Agreed!

    And the first-time back cover lyrics were also new to us, and the small shot of the fab four was very cool. Not new nowadays so it is hard to imagine it.

    The gatefold inside shot was also very different with nothing but the closeup photo of the boys. It made for a uniquely wonderfully trippy experience like no other. Pretty hard for later generations to grasp with so much since that copied or emulated that iconic and iconoclastic album art and album.

    There is a reason that later band's or artist's greatest work is often referred to as their "Sgt. Pepper". An easy shorthand for their very best.

    I'm just sayin'.

    :tiphat:
     
  12. Monasmee

    Monasmee Forum Resident

    Location:
    Albuquerque NM
    At the time, my goosebumps occurred during the orchestral rise, the final piano chord similar to a great piece of classical music, each work challenging the audience to listen without interruption until the standing ovation.
     
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  13. mr.datsun

    mr.datsun Now Jelly Rolls in the Street

    Location:
    London
    Not a bad thing in many cases.
     
  14. tedhead

    tedhead Forum Resident

    Location:
    Space City
    Now this I find very interesting. I wasn't around at the time, but I'd like to know if there was buzz around the album before coming out.

    I remember watching old footage of Dick Clark interviewing kids after showing Strawberry Fields video months before Pepper, and most of the kids weren't impressed or thought it was "too weird". Maybe its because they were teenyboppers, and maybe college kids, freaks, heads, and hippies were on a different wavelength. Not to mention some stuffy critics on tv asking "are the Beatles in fact finished?" based on other footage I've seen.

    Phil Lesh said that he was blown away when he heard "Tomorrow Never Knows" in 1966 and played it for the rest of the Dead, saying the Beatles were "on the same wavelength".

    So what I want to know is: were there any hints leading up to its release besides the Strawberry Fields/Penny Lane singles of the awesome strangeness to come? Were there rumors, whispers, promotional stuff? Or did it just pop up out of nowhere at the beginning of June 1967 and people got whacked?
     
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  15. Ghostworld

    Ghostworld Forum Resident

    Location:
    US
    I just remember being 8 and our older friend (9) telling us that Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds was about LSD. So even the kids were talking about it.
     
  16. Colocally

    Colocally One Of The New Wave Boys

    Location:
    Surrey BC.
    There was the footage in the street when they returned to Abbey Road to make Pepper, and they all had moustaches. I think it was in Anthology. I am sure when that was shown it must have created some intrigue.
     
  17. tedhead

    tedhead Forum Resident

    Location:
    Space City
    Yes I saw that too.

    The first time I saw that was in high school when PBS showed the documentary "It Was 20 Years Ago Today", which I still have. The interviewer asked them one by one about if they were finished in the sense of "are you going your separate ways", and they all said "No." This as opposed to the critics saying they were "finished" as in, "washed up".

    John said "...you always need other people for ideas and we get along fine." Ringo: "No, I'm having a great time, ha! Merry Christmas to you..."; and George just flatly saying "No!" then walking away. Paul said that "performance for us...its gone downhill because we can't develop when people can't hear us." Then he explained that they were developing things more in the studio.

    But I thought only those in the UK keeping a keen eye out might have seen that at the time. Based on Ringo's statement, it was December 1966. What I wondered was what was going on between January and June 1967 in the UK and around the world...
     
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  18. Colocally

    Colocally One Of The New Wave Boys

    Location:
    Surrey BC.
    There was a book that went along with the documentary, which dealt with Pepper and the times around it not just the Beatles, I haven't read it in years, but found it interesting. It was by Derek Taylor and dealt with Monterey, Haight Ashbury etc as well as London.
     
  19. HfxBob

    HfxBob Forum Resident

    Here is a newspaper article that was posted on another thread.

    Sgt. Pepper's 50th Anniversary editions to be released May 26, 2017* Anticipation Thread.

    When I saw this it freaked me out a bit because I can still remember hearing about Sgt. Pepper on my local radio station and they reported that one of the new songs would be called 'Meter Rita' just as this article states. I mis-heard it and thought one of the songs was going to be 'Meet Her Rita'.
     
  20. tages

    tages Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle
    There are quite a few articles and facts that say otherwise :D
     
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  21. maui jim

    maui jim Forum Resident

    Location:
    Lanikai
    Same here. Loved Revolver but it was another great Beatles lp with singles like ER and YS
    Pepper had no songs for am radio. We had to learn these songs by playing the album
     
  22. tages

    tages Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle
  23. Mr. LP Collector

    Mr. LP Collector Forum Resident

    I spent my younger years in the Denver/Colorado Springs area and when this album came AFAIC it was a seismic earthquake with my friends. Mind you, in my area we had all of 2 FM stations, the rock station was on am-KIMN-950. I'll never forget going to my friends house and we would talk about the different cuts and the most consistent response would be "what in the hell is this?" It was said in glee! I remember playing this album for my mom (who just turned 100 a couple months ago), with her it was a head scratcher- she loved "When I'm 64" though! I was all of 16 at the time and I still think about those days! And they were great days!
     
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  24. tedhead

    tedhead Forum Resident

    Location:
    Space City
    Yes, Derek Taylor is interviewed as much as Paul and George in that documentary. It was the first documentary I'd ever seen on the sixties counterculture. I also had Rolling Stone's celebration of Sgt Pepper that listed best albums from 1967-1987 that summer. It all sold me on the music and the era since I was mostly listening to Prince and his Minneapolis scene, early British punk and post punk/new wave (New Order, The Cure, B-52's, Echo and the Bunnymen, and The Sex Pistols), and had just discovered Pink Floyd via The Wall. The full performance of Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit" complete with liquid slide background blew me away. Not to mention the exorcism of the Pentagon, interview with Barry Miles on the London Scene, Peter Coyote and the Diggers, The Grateful Dead and Haight Ashbury, etc.

    I was sold on the era and the music but I saw and heard what even influenced the music and fashion of Prince (granny glasses, paisley obession, Hendrix, Beatles, Floyd, Arthur Lee) and the new wave bands (The Doors, The Byrds, Velvets) at the time. A classmate made a tape for me that winter of 1987 of Sgt Pepper from their cd and I played that cassette to death. I found it strange that, other than the White Album-Manson subject (that I checked out of morbid curiosity), the only Beatles that I was really familiar with was the mop top era. But I loved that documentary, and followed it up with Jimi Plays Monterey, which made me really wish I had a time machine.
     
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  25. HiFi Guy 008

    HiFi Guy 008 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Connecticut
    I find your post fascinating - as I've always been with the reaction to Pepper at the time when remembered. As I wasn't "of age" at the time. So there was some expectation of a statement? Could you give me some references - personal or otherwise? I'd always read/seen that this was a shocker to most in the US. A good one, but still a shocker.
     

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