Recording "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"

Thursday, February 2, 1967 • For The Beatles

Part of

Recording "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"

Nov 24, 1966 - Apr 20, 1967 • Songs recorded during this session appear on Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (UK Mono)

Album Songs recorded during this session officially appear on the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (UK Mono) LP.
EMI Studios, Studio Two, Abbey Road

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The Beatles had recorded the basic track of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Bandthe day before. On this day, from 7 pm to 1:45 am, they added overdubs to the track.

Paul McCartney added his lead vocals and backing vocals, sung with John Lennon and George Harrison, to track four of the four-track tape. The three Beatles then double-tracked their backing vocals onto track three. Take 9 was included in the 2017 “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” box set and contains some studio chatter at the end.

Paul: (singing) I feel it, I feel it…Baby, now I get it…Gotta get free now… (talking) Don’t like that. I think it’ll probably be another day singing it.

George: Yeah, and what you can do with the bits where you can’t get it ’cause you haven’t got enough breath, you can just stop…

Paul: Just take over, yeah.

Obviously, Paul changed his mind about re-recording his lead vocals, because the vocals recorded on that day made it to the released version.

Mal Evans wrote in his diary for this day: “Recording voices on ‘Captain Pepper’. All six of us doing the chorus in the middle, worked until about midnight.” This suggests that he and likely Ringo Starr and Neil Aspinall also contributed backing vocals. If this was the case, these were likely placed low in the mix and hardly audible.

As the four tracks of the tape were now filled, a reduction mix, called Take 10, was made to open up two tracks. Track one had the instruments and track four had all the vocals.

Towards the end of the session, a mono mix was made only for demo purposes. George Martin likely used the acetate discs of this mix to score the brass parts. Those were recorded on March 3, 1967, which was a little over a month later.

Last updated on December 26, 2023

Songs recorded


Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Tape copying • Tape reduction take 9 into take 10


Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Written by Lennon - McCartney

Mixing • Mono mixing - Remix 1 from take 10


Musicians on "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band"

Paul McCartney:
Lead vocals, Backing vocals
Ringo Starr:
Backing vocals ?
John Lennon:
Backing vocals
George Harrison:
Backing vocals
Mal Evans:
Backing vocals ?
Neil Aspinall:
Backing vocals ?

Production staff

George Martin:
Geoff Emerick:
Richard Lush:
Second engineer

Going further

The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions • Mark Lewisohn

The definitive guide for every Beatles recording sessions from 1962 to 1970.

We owe a lot to Mark Lewisohn for the creation of those session pages, but you really have to buy this book to get all the details - the number of takes for each song, who contributed what, a description of the context and how each session went, various photographies... And an introductory interview with Paul McCartney!

Shop on Amazon

The Beatles Recording Reference Manual: Volume 3: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band through Magical Mystery Tour (late 1966-1967)

The third book of this critically - acclaimed series, nominated for the 2019 Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) award for Excellence In Historical Recorded Sound, "The Beatles Recording Reference Manual: Volume 3: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band through Magical Mystery Tour (late 1966-1967)" captures the band's most innovative era in its entirety. From the first take to the final remix, discover the making of the greatest recordings of all time. Through extensive, fully-documented research, these books fill an important gap left by all other Beatles books published to date and provide a unique view into the recordings of the world's most successful pop music act.

Shop on Amazon

If we like to think, in all modesty, that the Paul McCartney Project is the best online ressource for everything Paul McCartney, The Beatles Bible is for sure the definitive online site focused on the Beatles. There are obviously some overlap in terms of content between the two sites, but also some major differences in terms of approach.

Read more on The Beatles Bible


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