My all-time favorite album by The Beatles would have to be 1967’s Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Musically, it’s such a strong album that it’s incredibly hard to choose just one song as a favorite. But, after giving it some thought, I would have to say that my favorite song on the album is “A Day in the Life.”
“A Day in the Life” is the song that closes Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. When the song starts, the listener thinks they have a good handle on where it’s headed, both musically and lyrically. But then, all of a sudden, the music starts to make a drastic shift, which catches the listener off-guard. The listener can tell the music is trying to head somewhere, but they have no idea where it will go when the break is over. The break suddenly comes to an end, and the music has completely changed in both tempo and sound. Also, the focus of the song’s lyrics suddenly shifts. And then, after the line, “Somebody spoke and I went into a dream,” the listener suddenly hears a return to the lyrical and musical focus of the first part of the song. The first and third sections of “A Day in the Life” are sung by John Lennon, while Paul McCartney handles the vocals for the middle section of the song.
As “A Day in the Life” is wrapping up and heading to its conclusion, the listener starts to hear the music return to the sound of the earlier break, and the music continues to build until it reaches a crescendo. Then, a final piano chord is heard, and the chord is just left to fade out on its own.
“A Day in the Life” is a brilliantly written and produced piece of music. It’s very different from the music that was being released at the same time in 1967 as Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Also, in many ways, “A Day in the Life” is very different from the music that has been written and recorded since the release of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. “A Day in the Life” is a very unique piece of music, and it serves as a shining example of why The Beatles have been, and still continue to be, such an influential band over the years.