The Beatles “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”

I think that’s the first time I actually TYPED “Sgt. Pepper’s…” etc, and it feels kind of weird to think about Dr. Pepper, and Chihuahuas named pepper, and lonely hearts, etc. There could be a public digital counter like the national debt clock that ticks off faster than the eye can see for every time this record is played. I’m sure more people have listened to it than have been served at McDonald’s. I feel a little bit in danger, actually, putting this on the turntable, as if this time might be the crucial spin that reaches some kind of cosmic saturation point and creates a rupture in the universe or something. But I’m trying to be objective. Because you know, as impossible as it is, that is what we strive for here at the “Farraginous Zone.”

I would be happy to never hear again: “A Little Help From My Friends.” “Getting Better.” “Fixing A Hole.” “She’s Leaving Home.” “For the Benefit of Mr. Kite.” Also: The SITAR, in any form. “Lovely Rita” sounds good only because it follows the interminable “Within You Without You.” What was I doing in 1967? Not acid, that’s for sure. I think listening to Motown on my transistor radio. I heard, from my cousin, that The Beatles said they were bigger than Jesus, or something, and I was kind of freaked out. The Partridge Family was bigger than Jesus, for me, and Tommy Roe, as well. Because I was in love. The Beatles didn’t do much for me until years and years later. When I heard that “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” meant LSD, I thought that was one of the coolest things I’d ever heard.

I still kind of like “A Day In The Life” at least. I mean, how can you argue with a line like: “four thousand holes in Blackburn, Lancashire?” If anyone knows what that means, I’ll thank them to please NOT tell me and ruin the spell. But I think I still have feelings about that song mostly because when I had laughing gas for the first time, my dentist, Dr. Verringer, happened to be playing that song. It was no accident; he loved The Beatles, that’s all he played in the office. I think he got some kind of thrill out of the fact that a guy was getting high in his chair while that song was playing. I can’t complain.

4 Responses to “The Beatles “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band””

  1. November 1, 2008 at 2:06 am

    Sgt. Pepper is only listenable for me during the month of June.

  2. November 1, 2008 at 7:15 pm

    That’s interesting because I feel that way about a lot of records, and also activities. Like I only smoke my pipe during Autumn– though that is a habit I picked up from Peter Barrickman– it works for me. The tobacco I was smoking is an English blend called “Squadron Leader” with a Sopwith Camel on the tin. After half a bowl I felt like I was hit in the head by a Sopwith Camel. I don’t even know if it’s actually a Sopwith Camel, but I just love typing, and saying, Sopwith Camel. Oh no, please don’t tell me there’s a band named Sopwith Camel!!!

  3. November 19, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Weird. This is a record I wouldn’t have expected to see here somehow. I grew up being a total huge Beatles fan – in fact from about 4th or 5th grade on up through jr.high (8th grade – back when 3 or 4 years seemed like FOREVER rather than the blink of an eye) I pretty much listened to nothing *but* the Beatles. They still remain one of my favorite bands, although I don’t really listen to them all that much anymore, having basically memorized their entire catalog ages ago.

    Anyhow, while Sgt.Pepper is always pointed to as some kind of revolutionary record, It really has never been one of my favorites of theirs. A lot of it sounds kind of harsh to me in a way, and some of the songs are really not all that great either. I really never liked “With A Little Help From My Friends,” it just seemed to me to be kinda sappy. Also, I could really do without “She’s Leaving Home” most of the time, as well as the vaudeville/English music hall-sounding “When I’m 64”.

    I think my favorite songs on it are “Lovely Rita Meter Maid,” even though it’s really kind of a stupid song – it just has a cool beat and interesting music and a weird ending that I like; “Good Morning, Good Morning” is really great sounding, I think, and is just a really exciting song – real driving and pulsating, and having all the krazy barnyard animal sounds at the end is really funny; and “Being For The Benefit of Mr. Kite” for some reason.

    Something about “Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds” always kind of bothered me for some reason, but I’m not sure why. “A Day In the Life” I think is really an amazing song all around though, I have to agree with you about that. And I love the piano chord that just fades out endlessly at the end. There are a few other songs left that I haven’t mentioned, but I dont’ really want to review every single song on it, even though I easily could.

    Like I said, I like some other Beatles albums much more – this is hardly their best. I think Revolver is miles better, as is the “White Album”; I think I even like Magical Mystery Tour better.

    Anyhow, I also always liked the name Sopwith Camel, mainly because of the Peanuts comics of Snoopy flying in one and fighting the Red Baron in World War I. But I won’t mention the band to you.

  4. November 28, 2008 at 6:49 pm

    That’s an interesting way to put it, that it sounds “harsh”– I agree with that, but I’m really trying to put my finger on exactly what that means to me, or how I feel about it. I think all I can say for sure is that this one has been played too many times for my poor ears, and I’m just going to have to wait for another lifetime to get anything close to a fresh perspective on it.

    Still, I keep trying to imagine what it would be like to bring home this record, unheard, and put it on. I guess if you were already a Beatles fan, you would’ve been pretty blown away. It’s kind of like being a fan of Michael Jordan– at least for me– I mean when he still played basketball. I felt like it was too obvious, kind of stupid even– but still there was no way I could NOT be a fan– he was just so amazing to watch, and you were always aware that you were watching someone very special, and historic, at least from a sports perspective. When he quit playing basketball to play baseball, but WASN’T GOOD ENOUGH to make a major league team, that just made him seem even that more amazing as a basketball player. I guess it made him seem human, after all. I guess I”m getting off the subject here, but since they pay me by the word, what the hell! It sure is nice to be doing this for a living, just think, some people have jobs breaking down cardboard boxes and taking faxes from the fax machine and putting them in the correct mailboxes! Yikes! It sure is nice to be able support a family, even if they aren’t REALLY my family, keep an apartment in the city and a country estate on the continent– all by typing out my completely worthless opinions about subjects that just don’t matter to anyone– completlely off the top of my fucking head– and not have to edit the results! Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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