Getting better all the time

In august 1966 the Beatles decided that it was time to permanently stop touring and take a 3 months break before concentrate on recording albums only. John Lennon acted in the movie "How I Won The War" and went to art shows like the Indica Gallery where he met his future wife Yoko Ono. Ringo Starr spend time with his wife and son. George Harrison travelled to India for six weeks to study the sitar under the instruction of Ravi Shankar and develop his interest in Hindu philosophy. Paul McCartney recorded a soundtrack for the film "The Family Way" and went to holiday in Kenya.
Penny Lane / Strawberry Fields Forevver - single cover
After 3 months of holiday they started recording a new album in november 1966. Paul McCartney already had an idea for a song about an Edwardian military band what would become Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band. The first 2 recorded songs were "Strawberry Fields Forever" and "Penny Lane". They released it as a double A-Side single to give the world already an example of what has to come. Because they don't tour anymore they didn't have to worry if the songs were easy to play during concerts. They can fully experiment with all kind of sounds and instruments now. "When I'm Sixty-Four" was recorded at the same time as “Penny Lane” and “Strawberry Field Forever”.
Brian Wilson was impressed by "Rubber Soul" from the Beatles and that inspired him to create "Pet Sounds". In return Paul McCartney was inspired by "Pet Sounds" to do Sgt. Pepper. Frank Zappa was also inspired by "Rubber Soul" to do his "Freak Out! with his Mothers Of Invention. Another album "We're Only in It for the Money" of the Mothers Of Invention also showed they were inspired by the album cover of Sgt. Pepper.
Album cover from the Mothers Of Invention - We're Only In It For The Money (1968)
Ringo came up with "With a Little Help from My Friends" and just like on "Yellow Submarine" he sings. George sung "Within You Without You" which cleary shows what he has learned in India. "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite!" was a song written by Lennon inspired by a 1843 poster for Pablo Fanque's circus that he purchased at an antique shop in Kent on the day of filming the promo video for "Strawberry Fields Forever".
Promo poster for Pablo Fanque's circus (1843)
 "Good Morning Good Morning" was inspired by a television commercial for Kellogg's Corn Flakes, from which Lennon adapted a jingle as the song's refrain. There is also some drug reference hidden in the track “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds”. LSD! The Song “Only a Northern Song” was also recorded for the album but not used at that time.
Pop artists Peter Blake and Jann Haworth designed the album cover for Sgt. Pepper. The cover directed by Robert Fraser included some famous people from these days mostly as cut-out figures in reallife format. The album was recorded on a simple 4 track stereo recorder and released in May 1967. The result was many years later still one of the best albums ever.
Original album cover
Sgt. Peppers Lonley Hearts Club Band
Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band /With a Little Help from My Friends / Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds / Getting Better / Fixing a Hole / She's Leaving Home / Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite! / Within You Without You / When I'm Sixty-Four / Lovely Rita / Good Morning Good Morning / Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise) / A Day in the Life
She's Leaving Home

Fixing A Hole

Penny Lane
Strawberry Fields Forever

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