March Madness Results – Top 1967 Album: Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band

16 Apr

We have a winner! The tournament’s #1 seed Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band was not denied, and unlike my incorrect pick of #1 seed Duke in the 2011 March Madness tournament, Sgt. Peppers brought it home. Am I surprised by the results? No. Despite the list of 16 fantastic albums, Sgt. Peppers was arguably the best. It beat #3 seed Are You Experienced by Jimi Hendrix by only three votes. It was close, but so was the Duke vs. Arizona game, that ultimately led to Duke’s demise.

Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band is widely considered as not only the Beatles‘ best album, but also the greatest album of the rock n’ roll era. The album was preceded by Revolver and it demonstrates musical elements that the Beatles were exploring in Revolver, like electronic sampling and creative instrumentation. Elements of Revolver were heard more in Magical Mystery Tour (a combination LP) and the culmination of the Beatles’ psychedelic experimentation resulted in the concept album that was Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

An album is obviously defined by its track listing. A concept album is also defined by its order. The album’s first song, “Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band,” is an invite into the magical world of the Beatles. The song sounds like the opening of a Broadway play. It is a tremendous concoction of melody, studio sounds, brass and rock. The song also seamlessly flows into track two, “With a Little Help From My Friends,” a traditional pop/rock Beatles’ hit. While Sgt. Peppers flows as a concept album, the music pieces psychedelic elements with the Beatles’ rock sound, but the psychedelic trinkets are more defined in some songs than others. It is this pleasant combination, mixed with the band’s unique efficiency, that makes Sgt. Peppers so successful.

Best song off the album? Is there any question. “A Day in the Life” provides listeners with one of the most original psychedelic pieces ever created. The song combines drawn-out verses and strange lyrics, with a fast-paced day breakdown and two of the most intense transitions ever heard in music. It is the David of rock music. Enjoy.


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