It was actually 40 years ago today that Sgt Pepper taught the band to play and a special re-recording of the Beatles' iconic album has been made to celebrate the 40th anniversary of its release.

A host of modern artists including the Kaiser Chiefs, Oasis and Razorlight have reportedly contributed to the project by recording their own versions of the historic tracks on Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

The album, dubbed by critics as one of the greatest of all time for its original sound, was released by the Beatles on June 1st 1967.

Widely hailed as the first ever 'concept' album, Sgt Pepper has come to be regarded by music critics as a symbol of that year's so-called summer of love.

Audio engineer Geoff Emerick, who worked on the original album, took part in the modern re-recording of Sgt Pepper using the same one-inch four-track equipment he first used to capture the sound of the Beatles.

The tribute recording is due to be aired on BBC Radio 2 tomorrow.

Meanwhile the cultural impact of Sgt Pepper is even set to be debated by academics later this month.

The University of Leeds' music school is hosting a special discussion forum, Sgt Pepper at 40, to mark the four decades since the album's release.

"We hope to consider Sgt Pepper from a range of angles - the compositional to the cultural, the historical to the sociological, the musicological to the technological," said Simon Warner, director of the school's popular music research centre.

"Well be wondering if the album was essentially a symbol of its time or whether this artefact still resonates four decades on," he added.

01/06/2007 06:17:53