“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” 20th birthday party

Monday, June 1, 1987

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From UPI Archives, June 1, 1987:

LONDON — Paul McCartney was the only one of three surviving Beatles to attend a party at Abbey Road studios on the 20th anniversary of the release of the group’s celebrated ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ album.

McCartney cut a birthday cake for the album, considered by many critics the greatest rock album, at the Abbey Road studios, where the Beatles recorded 188 tracks until they disbanded in 1970.

McCartney, 44, said ‘the message’ of the album, which was released June 1, 1967, and has sold more than 30 million copies, was to help foster ‘peace and love’ but lamented that 20 years later the world is still rife with conflict.

‘I mean then we wanted an end to apartheid in South Africa, we wanted to encourage peace on earth, we wanted love and understanding between people everywhere,’ he said. ‘So now what have we learned? If anything, that change comes slowly.’

But he added, ‘There’s a strong volume of people out there who still believe it. We may be a bit beaten down now, you know I mean it’s tough to keep thinking all this stuff 20 years and not really get far.’

To the cheers of the scores of record executives and reporters who went to the party he added, ‘But I’m optimistic.’

‘I hope in the next 20 years we’ll be able to come up with some better results for our kids,’ he said.

Ringo Starr and George Harrison, the other surviving Beatles, were invited to the Abbey Road studios to mark the anniversary and the official release of the album on compact disc. But a spokesman for the studio said they were unable to attend because of schedule conflicts.

Invitations were also sent to Yoko Ono, the widow of John Lennon slain in New York by a deranged Beatles fan in 1980, and their son, Sean, but they declined, the spokesman said.

From Beatles Archive on X: “Paul McCartney with Linda and Peter Blake at the 20th anniversary party of Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, 1987 #TheBeatles via @SgtPepper1710 https://t.co/srnpO8eoLR” / X (twitter.com)

Last updated on January 31, 2024

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