When I was in grade five, my dad returned from a business trip to China with gifts: Two bootlegged cassette tapes of Beatles songs. The label was an ugly orange and there were spelling mistakes on the outside case. But I loved those tapes and couldn’t stop listening. More than a decade after they broke up, I had discovered the Beatles.
My life changed again when I bought Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heats Club Band on vinyl. The album turns 50 this week.
One track, A Day in the Life, was like nothing I had ever heard before. All at once, the song moved filled me with sadness, awe and wonder.
I love almost the whole album. Aside from Within Without You, the George Harrison Sitar track, Sgt. Pepper’s is nearly perfect. The amazing thing is that two of the best songs from the Sgt. Pepper’s sessions were released early as two sides of a single and therefore left off the album. Imagine how much stronger this record would have been if these tracks had been included instead of Within Without You.
There’s something about this album that informed my musical tastes for the rest of my life; I feel it in the bands I have loved most from the Smiths and Depeche Mode in my high school years to Vampire Weekend and the New Pornographers more recently.
What’s your favorite album of all time?
Once a week, I’m gong to take a break from writing about my quest to be happier, healthier and more productive to write about something a little different. Today’s post on Sgt. Pepper’s is the first in the #SundayFunday series.