Thursday, July 08, 2010

Paul McCartney on the Cover for Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

"These were all just cult heroes. George chose a few of his schoolmates he liked, and the rest of us said names we liked the sound of like Aldous Huxley, H.G. Wells, Johnny Weissmuller.

"Those Indian people have amazing stories. There's one called Yogananda Para Manza, who died in 1953 and left his body in an incredibly perfect state. Medical reports in Los Angeles three or four months after he died were saying this is incredible; this man hasn't decomposed yet. He was sitting there glowing because he did this sort of transcendental bit, transcended his body by planes of consciousness. He was taught by another person on the cover and he was taught by another, and it goes back to the one called Babujee who's just a little drawing looking upwards.

"You can't photograph him -- he's an agent. He puts a curse on the film. He's the all-time governor, he's been at it a long time and he's still around doing the transcending bit.

"So they're there planning the spiritual thing for us. So, if they are planning it, what a groove that he's got himself on our cover, right int he middle of the Beatles' LP cover! Normal ideas of God wouldn't have him interested in Beatles music or any pop -- it's a bit infra dig -- but obviously, if we're all here doing it, and someone's interested in us, then it's all to do with it. There's not one bit worse than another bit. So that's great, that's beautiful, that he's right on the cover with all his mates.

"Whatever it is, it's what is doing all those trees and doing us and keeping you going, which someone must be doing.

"The Yogi goes through millions of things to realise the simplest of all truths, because while you are going through this part, there's always the opposite truth. You say, 'Ah well, that's all there is to it then. It's all great, and God's looking after you.' Then someone says, 'What about a hunchback then, is that great?' And you say, 'Okay then, it's all lousy.' And this is just as true if you want to see it. But the truth is that it's neither good nor lousy, just down the middle. A state of being that doesn't have black or white, good or bad.

"We realised for the first time that someday someone would actually be holding a thing that they'd call 'The Beatles' new LP' and that normally it would just be a collection of songs or a nice picture on the cover, nothing more. So the idea was to do a complete thing that you could make what you liked of; just a little magic presentation. We were going to have a little envelope in the centre with the nutty things you can buy at Woolworths: a surprise packet."

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