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The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band hits 50

"It was twenty years ago today Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play."

And so begins one of music's most seminal albums - The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band - which celebrates its 50-year anniversary on June 01.

The eighth studio album for the 'Fab Four', the album marked the final transformation of once prim-and-proper boys from Liverpool to kings of the counter-culture movement sweeping the late 1960s.

The album was an instant commercial success, dominating the No.1 spot on the billboards on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

But the band's ability to fuse an experimental, but technically brilliant sound with a sense of the worries and wonder of the times, truly made it a classic that would survive the test of time.

One of music's earliest concept album's, the songs showcased the group's defiance towards conventional melody-making, testing the endless boundaries the industry had to offer.

Even the album's track names point to the band's need to escape from the 'norm'.

'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds' has long been speculated to be a direct reference to the drug LSD - despite denials from writers John Lennon and Paul McCartney - while 'Fixing a Hole' was thought to be about a heroin user.

And then there was the album cover!

Designed by pop artists Peter Blake and Jann Haworth, the picture sets the Beatles (standing directly next to their Madam Tussauds wax works) in front of some of history's most famous icons, including actress Marilyn Monroe, boxer Sonny Liston and writer Edgar Allan Poe.

The result was an album that rocketed to critical success - swooping a historic four Grammy Awards in 1968 - while quickly, and surely, made its way into the record collection of every music fan for the last 50 years.

And may it do so for another 50.