After The Beatles dove into experimentation with Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967 and influenced a whole new era of psychedelic rock, they decided to take it a step further with their next album. Magical Mystery Tour, the soundtrack to the film of the same name, would be released in November 1967 and reach #1 on the album charts on January 6th, 1968.
Paul McCartney had the idea to make a new Beatles film, but instead of the usual happy-go-lucky feeling, this one would have a more adult theme. The film Magical Mystery Tour would encompass the psychedelic experience that occurs with the use of LSD, which was rather popular amongst counter-culturists during the late ’60s.
The film’s production was extremely unorganized and led to a confusing plot, which is why many considered Magical Mystery Tour to be a “bomb” (at least in comparison to The Beatles’ other beloved films). However, the accompanying album had different reviews. The soundtrack produced a wave of new hits like Hello, Goodbye, Strawberry Fields Forever, The Fool on the Hill, Penny Lane, and All You Need Is Love. Most of the tracks featured heavy psychedelic rock elements, even more than its predecessor Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
Exactly 55 years later and Magical Mystery Tour is just as relevant as ever. To celebrate the record’s birthday, watch this clip of Strawberry Fields Forever from the film of the same name: