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Magical Mystery Tour (1967 album)

Listen to “Magical Mystery Tour” full album

The Beatles released Magical Mystery Tour as a double EP in the United Kingdom and as an LP in the United States. This album includes the soundtrack to the 1967 television film of the same name. In the UK, the EP was released on 8 December 1967, while the Capitol Records LP was released on 27 November and includes five additional songs originally released as singles that year. The eleven-track LP was released by Parlophone in the UK in 1976.

The Beatles continued the experiments that typified Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967) and the psychedelic sound they had pursued since Revolver (1966) when recording their new songs. The project was initiated by Paul McCartney in April 1967, but after the band recorded the song “Magical Mystery Tour“, it lay dormant until the death of their manager, Brian Epstein, in late August. As the Beatles furthered their association with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, they recorded alongside filming and editing.

According to some biographers, the sessions were aimless and unfocused, with the band members overindulging in sound experimentation and exerting greater control over production. McCartney contributed three songs to the soundtrack, including “The Fool on the Hill“, while Lennon and Harrison contributed “I Am the Walrus” and “Blue Jay Way“, respectively. As well as “Hello, Goodbye“, issued as a single with the soundtrack record, and incidental music for the film, “Flying” was also produced during the sessions. As part of their desire to experiment with record formats and packaging, the EP and LP included a 24-page booklet containing song lyrics, colour photos from film production, and cartoonist Bob Gibson’s colour illustrations.

Although the Magical Mystery Tour film was widely criticized in the media, the soundtrack was a critical and commercial success. As a result, it topped the EPs chart compiled by Record Retailer and reached number 2 on the magazine’s singles chart (later the UK Singles Chart). In 1969, the album was nominated for the Grammy Award for Album of the Year and topped Billboard’s Top LPs chart for eight weeks. When the Beatles’ catalog was standardized internationally in 1987, Magical Mystery Tour became the only Capitol-produced LP to replace the band’s intended format.

  • Release date: November 27, 1967
  • Genre: Psychedelic rock, Progressive rock
  • Label: Parlophone

Magical Mystery Tour tracklist

SIDE A

  1. Magical Mystery Tour
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  2. The Fool on the Hill
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  3. Flying (instrumental)
    (Lennon/McCartney/Harrison/Starkey)
  4. Blue Jay Way
    (Harrison)
  5. Your Mother Should Know
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  6. I Am the Walrus
    (Lennon/McCartney)

SIDE B

  1. Hello, Goodbye
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  2. Strawberry Fields Forever
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  3. Penny Lane
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  4. Baby You’re a Rich Man
    (Lennon/McCartney)
  5. All You Need Is Love
    (Lennon/McCartney)

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