50 years ago today, the Beatles revolutionized popular music with the release of ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.’ To some, however, the album is as famous for its inventive cover as it is for its ground-breaking music. Over the years, many have speculated about supposed ‘missing’ individuals on the cover.
(The cover as released)
Well, today, on the 50th anniversary of its release, newly uncovered documents reveal that it was 16th century Anabaptist leader Menno Simons who was removed from the cover.
(the former location of Menno Simons)
The decision to remove Menno seems to have resulted from an argument between John and Paul. Paul argued Menno Simons was a good pacifist and therefore fit the hippie ethos that was in vogue at the time. John, however, retorted that the “Beatles were bigger than Menno,” and predicted the imminent demise of the Anabaptist faith.
(The expunged picture of Menno)
The documents also reveal a number of insights into the creation of the ‘Abbey Road’ cover. According to sources close to the Beatles, a Mennonite horse and buggy, which was parked on Abbey Road in the summer of 1969 was edited out of the album cover at the request of George Harrison, who felt it conflicted with his newfound Hare Krishna beliefs. Some have also interpreted the missing buggy as a clue that Paul McCartney was dead.
(clear evidence that a Mennonite horse and buggy was removed from the cover)
There has also been a lot of mystery over the barely audible words spoken by John Lennon at the end of the song ‘Strawberry Fields Forever.’ Over the years people have claimed that John said ‘I buried Paul,’ a further clue of Paul’s death and replacement. John Lennon, however, claimed to have said ‘Cranberry Sauce.’ Well, the debate is now settled.
(“strawberry fields, nothing is real, and nothing to get hung about”)
Our documents suggest it was not ‘I buried Paul’ nor ‘Cranberry Sauce’ spoken at the end of the song, but, in fact, John was saying either, ‘I baptized Paul,’ or ‘Rhubarb Platz.’ If you play the song at high volumes, you can decide for yourself.
Finally, Mennonites have been scouring MCC stores for decades trying to find a discarded copy of the notorious ‘Butcher’ cover, a rare edition of the ‘Yesterday and Today’ album that was quickly pulled from the shelves in 1966 and replaced because of its controversial imagery. Original copies of the album can go for tens of thousands of dollars. However, our sources reveal that the album cover need not have been quite so controversial.
The Beatles were not, in fact, advocating death and destruction, but had simply paid a visit to the local formavorscht maker, Mr. Johan Fast. These days, Paul prefers his farmer sausage made of tofu. Ringo, however, has been hooked on Mennonite farmer sausage ever since the mid-60s, an addiction that he credits with his long life and drumming skills.
This doesn’t explain the doll’s heads, of course, nor the creepy smiles, but it should go a long way to reassuring Grandma Wiens when she questions you about what kind of filthy LPs you have hidden underneath your mattress.