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  • The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Monkees put out psychedelic albums in 1967.
  • Keith Richards said The Rolling Stones weren’t initially trying to be ambitious at the time.
  • Two of the three albums reached No. 1 in the United States.
The Beatles’ Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, and George Harrison standing in a row
The Beatles’ Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, and George Harrison | John Pratt/Keystone/Getty Images

During the same year, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Monkees all embraced psychedelic rock music. Subsequently, Keith Richards discussed whether The Rolling Stones’ psychedelic album was inspired by The Beatles. Notably, one of the groups’ psychedelic albums was far more popular than the others.

The Beatles made a psychedelic album in 1967 before The Monkees and The Rolling Stones did

1967 saw the release of The Beatles’ psychedelic album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Subsequently, The Monkees embraced the genre with Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd as did The Rolling Stones with Their Satanic Majesties Request, while the Fab Four made Magical Mystery Tour, another album in the same vein.

The book Keith Richards on Keith Richards: Interviews & Encounters includes an interview from 1971. In it, Richards discussed Their Satanic Majesties Request. “It wasn’t meant to be that ambitious, it just got that way,” he said. “It must have taken nearly all of ’67 to get it together. Started in February and March and it came out in [December].”

Keith Richards discussed whether ‘Sgt. Pepper’ inspired The Rolling Stones

Richards was asked if Their Satanic Majesties Request was an attempt to mimic Sgt. Pepper. “I never listened any more to The Beatles than to anyone else in those days when we were working,” he said. “It’s probably more down to the fact that we were going through the same things. 

“Maybe we were doing it a little bit after them. Anyway, we were following them through so many scenes” he continued. “We’re only just mirrors ourselves of that whole thing. It took us much longer to get a record out for us, our stuff was always coming out later anyway.”


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How the three albums performed on the pop charts in the United States

Sgt. Pepper became a massive hit. The album reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200 for 15 weeks, staying on the chart for a total of 233 weeks. It stayed on the chart longer than any of The Beatles’ other studio albums except Abbey Road.

Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd. was popular too, topping the Billboard 200 for five weeks and lasting on the chart for 64 weeks altogether. The record was The Monkees’ final No. 1 album. Their Satanic Majesties Request was a more modest hit, reaching No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and remaining on the chart for 30 weeks. 

While Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd. and Their Satanic Majesties Request weren’t as popular as Sgt. Pepper, all three albums show that psychedelic music dominated the charts in 1967.