The Beatles have officially kicked off the campaign for the 50th anniversary edition of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band with a release of the "(Take 9 and Speech)" version of the title track.
The Beatles Celebrate 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band' with special anniversary edition releases Preorder: http://thebeatles.lnk.to/SgtPepperAnniversary Music video by The Beatles performing Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. (C) 2017 Calderstone Productions Limited (a Division of Universal Music Group) / Apple Corps Limited http://vevo.ly/re7iiS
It's noticeably rougher than the version that kicked off the original album and doesn't have the crowd noises and brass that were added later, though it was spruced up a bit by Giles Martin, son of the late original Beatles and Sgt. Pepper's producer George Martin, who helmed the reissue.
The set comes out May 26 in several configurations, featuring a wealth of rare and unreleased video and audio material.
Meanwhile, The Beatles' home town of Liverpool is holding a Sgt. Pepper's golden anniversary celebration from May 25-June 16 featuring commissioned dance, music and art pieces and culminating in a fireworks show. Sgt. Pepper's actual anniversary is June 1.
Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.