The Beatles eighth studio album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was released on this day 50 years ago, and the album still maintains clarity and relevance today.

SGT. PEPPER’S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND 50 YEAR ANNIVERSARY

Such iconic tracks as “With a Little Help From My Friends,” “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,” “When I’m Sixty-Four,” and “A Day in the Life” were immortalized in this 1967 LP. The album won six Grammys in 1968, including Album of the Year, becoming the first rock LP to win the honor.

While fans bicker over which album is the Beatles best, Beatles expert Bruce Spizer considers Sgt. Pepper to be the band’s “most important album.” The theme sees the Beatles recast as an alter-ego group, meant to satirize the pop scene, but ultimately put the real band at the center of that lifestyle. “We were fed up with being Beatles,” Paul McCartney told Rolling Stone years after the album’s release. “We were not boys, we were men… artists rather than performers… We’d pretend to be someone else. It liberated you – you could do anything when you got to the mix or on your guitar, because it wasn’t you.”

Rolling Stone declared the album the greatest album of all time because “it elevated rock music to an art form,” and at the same time was ” a great listening experience.”

Many bands and artists since 1968 have tried to emulate the magic of Sgt. Pepper, but none has quite captured the fun, lighthearted energy of the original. The album pulled in both fans and critics, but none can deny the high bar it set for all rock albums to come.

The city of Liverpool is celebrating the anniversary by putting on the Sgt. Pepper at 50: Heading for Home festival, two weeks of performances, art, and imaginings based on the songs of the album.

Dolby Laboratories and the Universal Music Group are also presenting special listening events with remastered versions of all the songs, available for screening at select theaters in the US and Canada.

“The remixing of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in Dolby Atmos marks a significant milestone for the technology,” said Curt Behlmer, SVP of Content Solutions and Industry Relations at Dolby. “This project demonstrates the capability of Dolby Atmos to bring moving audio to music in a new and innovative way. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with Universal Music Group to transform the music experience.”

“To celebrate the 50th anniversary of its release, we wanted to reflect this ambition using the latest technologies,” adds Michael Frey, President of Operations and Advanced Media for UMG. “Remastering Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in Dolby Atmos has enabled us to give fans a new way to experience this iconic album.”

Click here for tickets to the exclusive, today-only screenings. Below are a list of locations.

United States:
Chicago, IL – AMC Village Crossing 18
Dallas-FT Worth, TX – AMC Northpark 15
Detroit, MI – AMC Gratiot 21
Houston, TX – AMC First Colony 24
Las Vegas, NV – AMC Town Square 18
Los Angeles, CA – AMC Century City 15
New York, NY – AMC Empire 25
Philadelphia, PA – AMC Neshaminy 24
San Francisco, CA – AMC Metreon 16
Washington, DC – AMC Georgetown 14

Canada:
Beauport, QC – Cinéma Cineplex Odeon Beauport
Calgary, AB – Scotiabank Theatre Chinook
Edmonton, AB – Scotiabank Theatre Edmonton
Montréal, QC – Cinéma Cineplex Forum
Toronto, ON – Cineplex Cinemas Yonge-Dundas and VIP
Toronto, ON – Cineplex Cinemas VIP Don Mills
Vancouver, BC – Scotiabank Theatre Vancouver
Winnipeg, MB – SilverCity St. Vital Cinemas