Sgt. Pepper and the Beatles: It Was Forty Years Ago Today

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Olivier Julien
Routledge, 2018 M03 29 - 208 pages
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The first concept album in the history of popular music, the soundtrack of the Summer of Love or 'Hippy Symphony No. 1': Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band is first and foremost the album that gave rise to 'hopes of progress in pop music' (The Times, 29 May 1967). Sgt. Pepper and the Beatles commemorates the fortieth anniversary of this masterpiece of British psychedelia by addressing issues that will help put the record in perspective. These issues include: reception by rock critics and musicians, the cover, lyrics, songwriting, formal unity, the influence of non-European music and art music, connections with psychedelia and, more generally, the sociocultural context of the 1960s, production, sound engineering and musicological significance. The contributors are world renowned for their work on the Beatles: they examine Sgt. Pepper from the angle of disciplines such as musicology, ethnomusicology, history, sociology, literature, social psychology and cultural theory.
 

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Contents

an introduction to Sgt Pepper
1
cultural agendas or optimistic escapism?
11
2 Sgt Pepper and the diverging aesthetics of Lennon and McCartney
23
3 Sgt Peppers quest for extended form
33
4 The sound design of Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band
45
5 The Beatles and Indian music
63
psychedelic classicism and classical psychedelia in Sgt Pepper
75
magic myth and music
91
Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band and psychedelic insight
103
Sgt Pepper and fables of interference
121
a reencounter with Sgt Pepper
139
Sgt Pepper and the rise of a phonographic tradition in twentiethcentury popular music
147
References
171
Index of names
181
Index of songs albums films and musical works
187
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About the author (2018)

Olivier Julien teaches the history and musicology of popular music at the Universities of Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV) and Paris-Sorbonne Nouvelle (Paris III), France.

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