1967: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Parlophone/June 1, 1967.  PMC 7027 (mono) PCS 7027 (stereo)

Produced by George Martin All songs composed by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, unless otherwise noted.

Side 1:

Sgt. Pepper's 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! 

Side 2:

Within You Without You (George Harrison) 
When I'm Sixty-Four 
Lovely Rita 
Good Morning Good Morning 
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (reprise) 
A Day In The Life 
Sgt. Pepper's inner groove

The final track is on the original LP, but isn't mentioned there. "The track" is made up of noise and laughter from The Beatles, and was located on the LP in the area where the stylus goes round and round unless one had a grammophone player which stopped automaticly. Fold-out sleeve, lyrics on the back, special inner sleeve and a sheet with cut-outs. In 1967, this LP was the most elaborate record ever produced.

The CD was a 20th anniverary edition in 1987 and was released with an accompanying booklet written by Mark Lewisohn, containing information about the recordings, as well as more pictures from the "Pepper" photo sessions.

The cut-out sheet The inner bag (part of gatefold in the background)
The gatefold sleeve

Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

basic recording- 1 Feb 1967
additional recording- 1,2 Feb, 3,6 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d generation
mono-mixed: 6 Mar 1967. crossfaded 6 Apr 1967
stereo-mixed: 6 Mar 1967. crossfaded 7 Apr 1967 Re-mastered and re-mixed again in 1999 for the "Yellow Submarine Songtrack"

The crossfade joins this song to With a Little Help From My Friends.

The lead guitar starting around "I don't really want to stop the show" is louder in mono, barely there in stereo. The crowd noise differs between the two and the crossfade is less well hidden in mono.

The Yellow Submarine Songtrack mix re-synchs the old multitracks again and brings us a cleaner version, this time in richer stereo than on the "Sgt. Pepper" LP. Paul's vocals and Ringo's drums are centered, while the backing vocals and the sound of the crowd has been moved about a bit.

With A Little Help From My Friends 

basic recording- 29 Mar 1967
additional recording- 29,30 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 3d generation
mono-mixed: 31 Mar 1967. crossfaded 6 Apr 1967
stereo-mixed: 7 Apr 1967. crossfaded 7 Apr 1967. Re-mastered and re-mixed again in 1999 for the "Yellow Submarine Songtrack"

The crossfade joins this to the preceding song, Sgt Pepper, but the songs do not overlap; rather, crowd noise runs from one through to the other. This song starts right before the announcement "Billy Shears!", which is more readily apparent as a change in ambience in mono, since louder crowd noise covers the join better in stereo.

The Yellow Submarine Songtrack mix re-synchs the old multitracks again and brings us a cleaner version, this time in richer stereo than on the "Sgt. Pepper" LP. Vocals and drums has especially benefitted from this mix.

Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds

basic recording- 1 Mar 1967
additional recording- 1,2 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d eneration
mono-mixed: 3 Mar 1967
stereo-mixed: 7 Apr 1967 and a different stereo mix was made in 1995 for "Anthology 2". Re-mastered and re-mixed again in 1999 for the "Yellow Submarine Songtrack"

The mono-mix has quite a bit of "phasing" not in stereo -- phasing is ADT with deliberate tape speed manipulation ("flanging") for a classic pyschedelic effect. Note especially the third "Lucy" line in the first refrain, but it continues, notable again in second refrain and in instrumental part leading to third refrain. Stereo sounds more natural but the mono mix evidently shows what was desired.

A new mono mix was made 1 November 1967 for the original Yellow Submarine film print with no vocal in the first part of the first verse, so an actor for the film could be dubbed in, and this also has less phasing.

The Anthology mix is deliberately different and sychronizes parts of an outtake with the standard take. It is take 6 (standard version is 7) with a tamboura from take 7 with harmony vocals in the chorus from the standard version take 8. There is no bass.

The Yellow Submarine Songtrack mix re-synchs the old multitracks again and takes us back to a cleaner version, John's vocals are glorious and Ringo's drumming leading to the chorus have a richer sound. 

Getting Better

basic recording- 9 Mar 1967
additional recording- 9,10,21,23 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 4th
generation
mono-mixed: 23 Mar 1967
stereo-mixed: 17 Apr 1967

No noticable differences between the mono and stereo mixes (!)

Fixing A Hole

basic recording- 9 Feb 1967 at Regent Sound
additional recording- 9 Feb at Regent Sound, 21 Feb 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d generation
mono-mixed: 21 Feb 1967. edited
stereo-mixed: 7 Apr 1967

The mono is two mixes edited together. The mono is a few seconds longer, long fade

She's Leaving Home

basic recording- 17 Mar 1967
additional recording- 20 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d generation
mono-mixed: 20 Mar 1967. edited.
stereo-mixed: 17 Apr 1967. edited. 

A short amount of instrumental work between the verses was removed after the mixing was done, so both mixes are edited. Reverb had been added during mixing, and the edits are a little more obvious in stereo, just before Paul starts singing the second and third verses. The two mixes are at different speeds, and we believe stereo was slowed down when mixed (rather than the mono being sped up), partly because the orchestra sounds better in mono. Possibly the tape was made at an off-speed, like many Sgt Pepper songs, and was played for stereo mixing at normal speed?

Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!

basic recording- 17 Feb 1967
additional recording- 17,20 Feb, 28,29,31 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 3d generation
mono-mixed: 31 Mar 1967
stereo-mixed: 7 Apr 1967 and a different stereo mix was made in 1995 for "Anthology 2"

The mono-mix has more of the organ tape loops in the break after "Henry the horse dances the waltz", perhaps a track not faded up in the stereo mix ?

The Anthology mix is deliberately different. First it shows take 7 without the organ and calliope effects, including some John scat vocal during the instrumental break that was mixed out of the other versions, and then it crossfades into the organ and calliope overdub tracks to a fadeout

Within You Without You

basic recording- 15 Mar 1967
additional recording- 22 Mar, 3 Apr 1967
master tape- 4 track 4th generation
mono-mixed: 4 Apr 1967. edited
stereo-mixed: 4 Apr 1967. edited and a different stereo mix was made in 1995 for "Anthology 2"

For both mono and stereo, "part 1" (apparently the first, vocal section) was mixed separately from "parts 2 and 3" (the instrumental and the final vocal part?), and those mixes were edited together. 
The laughter at the end was also edited on, but mono and stereo have a different laugh.
The Anthology has a remix of the instrumental tracks without the vocal, and no laughter at the end. There are traces of the vocal: for example, listen for "you're only very small" just before the instrumental break, in the left channel, and for the last verse.

When I'm Sixty-Four 

basic recording- 6 Dec 1966
additional recording- 6,8,20,21 Dec 1966
master tape- 4 track 2d generation
mono-mixed: 30 Dec 1966
stereo-mixed: 17 Apr 1967 Re-mastered and re-mixed again in 1999 for the "Yellow Submarine Songtrack"

The tape was speeded up when mixed. The Yellow Submarine Songtrack mix re-synchs the old multitracks again and takes us back to a cleaner version, the woodwinds have a fullrer sound and Paul sounds as if he's singing in your living room.

Lovely Rita 

basic recording- 23 Feb 1967
additional recording- 23,24 Feb, 7,21 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d generation
mono-mixed: 21 Mar 1967
stereo-mixed: 17 Apr 1967

Talk just before the end is audible, the last syllables "leave it" (or "believe it"?) being quite distinct in mono

Good Morning Good Morning

basic recording- 8 Feb 1967
additional recording- 16 Feb, 13,29 Mar 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d generation
mono-mixed: 19 Apr 1967. edited
stereo-mixed: 6 Apr 1967. edited. A different stereo-mix was made in 1995 for "Anthology 2"

An Apr 6 mono mix was replaced by an Apr 19 mix containing an improved blend of the hen cluck at the end into the first note of the next song, Sgt Pepper (reprise). Lewisohn does not say when or if the Apr 6 stereo mix was redone, and perhaps it was not. Checking the ending shows that the sound effects match in mono and stereo until the foxhunt, where the mono fades earlier, so that the hunt lasts about 6 seconds longer in stereo and continues past the somewhat later fadeout of the music. This may be the end of the main tape. Because of the early fade in mono, "Good morning good morning good" is heard only 9 times as against 10 times in stereo. Both mixes then crossfade to the chicken squawk on what appears to be a separate tape, since unlike the other sound effects it does not overlap any music. The squawk is slightly longer in stereo, and blends better into the Sgt Pepper (reprise)-- the retry on the mono mix may have been to make it more like the stereo?

The lead guitar is mixed down after the break in mono but in stereo it continues loud over "People running round...". After "tea and 'Meet the Wife'" the guitar phrase is treated to a little extra ADT in mono.

The Anthology mix is deliberately different and appears to show the state as of Feb 16, after the vocal and bass overdub, but without the horns and the sound effecs at the end.


Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (reprise)

basic recording- 1 Apr 1967
additional recording- 1 Apr 1967
master tape- 4 track
mono-mixed: 1 Apr 1967. edited. crossfaded 6 Apr 1967.
stereo-mixed: 20 Apr 1967. edited. crossfaded 20 Apr 1967.

The crossfade joins this to the following song, A Day in the Life. The edit in mono is better, so the last note hits the first chord of A Day in the Life, while there is a delay in stereo.

The mono-mix starts with unknown spoken words not in stereo, then both have a countdown with someone saying "bye" (?) behind it, then mono has more drum beats to start. During the sequence just described, crowd noise in mono starts louder, dies down, then up to a cheer, while crowd noise in stereo stays steady at medium volume-- the crowd noise seems to have been added during mixing. Right before the vocal is a "woo", louder in mono. Toward the end in mono, Paul is heard shouting unintelligible phrases ("we are the greatest"?, "the band, the one and only band"? among other things) starting near the last "Sgt Pepper's lonely", while in stereo John is heard nearer the end saying something like "hold my guitar for me".

A Day In The Life 

basic recording- 19 Jan 1967
additional recording- 19,20 Jan, 3,10,22 Feb 1967
master tape- 4 track 2d generation + 4 track (2 tapes)
mono-mixed: Mix A: 22 Feb 1967. edited. crossfaded 6 Apr 1967
stereo-mixed:
Mix B: 23 Feb 1967. edited. crossfaded 20 Apr 1967
New mix: Mix C: mono 30 Jan 1967, and mono and stereo 1995. edited

The orchestra was recorded on 4 tracks of a separate 4-track tape (take 7) and synchronized during mixing with the Beatles tape (take 6). The edit is for the final note, recorded separately.

The crossfade joins the beginning to the preceding Sgt Pepper (reprise). For the 1967-1970 collection and on a 1978 single, the crossfade is just cut off, so the song begins later than its real beginning. The original mix without crossfade (B) appeared on the film soundtrack LP and CD Imagine: John Lennon. The same original mix, also including a countdown that is not heard under the crossfade, appeared in a 1967 promo film.

The Anthology mix (C) is deliberately different and contains some material not used in the standard versions (A and B). It contains many parts edited together: talk before take 1 (the take used for the standard version); take 2 (not the standard version) from start of song through the 24-bar count; overdubs to take 6 later wiped out for the standard version but preserved in a 30 Jan mono mix; more of take 2 for the last verse; take 2 synchronized with the orchestral overdub of the standard version; and finally talk recorded on Feb 10 and never intended to be used as the conclusion. All of this is mono until the orchestral overdub, which has been remixed to stereo. The Jan 30 overdub mono mix has been available on bootleg since 1987, and shows a different bass part throughout as well as the different Paul vocal highlighted here; but it breaks down after Paul flubs the vocal. The reverb on the 24-bar count was done during recording.

"dog cut"

basic recording- none
additional recording- none
master tape- none

cut into first mono master disk 28 Apr 1967.
cut into first stereo master disk 1 May 1967.
generated 1987.

On LP this 15 KHz tone is not a recording at all, but was cut mechanically into the master disk after A Day in the Life. The dates shown are of the first disk cutting for Parlophone in the UK; it was recreated at unknown dates for other master disks, but was never cut into disks by Capitol for US release. For CD it was created electronically in 1987 and put into the master digital tape used for CD production.

Sgt. Pepper's inner groove

basic recording- 21 Apr 1967
additional recording- none
master tape- 4 track
mono-mixed: 21 Apr 1967
stereo-mixed: 21 Apr 1967

This 2 seconds of talk was placed in the inner groove of the Parlophone release. It was dropped for pressings some time after 1978. It is not exactly the same for all pressings due to the runout groove meeting the inner groove at different points in different LP masters. For CD it is repeated into a fadeout.

Back to the LP's