On this day in history, June 1, 1967... The Beatles released their eighth studio album, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. It was an immediate commercial and critical success, spending 27 weeks at the top of the UK albums chart and 15 weeks at number one in the US. In February 1967, after recording the "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" song, Paul McCartney suggested that the Beatles would have the freedom to experiment musically if an entire album was performed by the fictional alter ego of the Beatles, the Sgt. Pepper band. Following John Lennon's notorious "Jesus" comments to a London journalist in 1966, a major boycott of the Beatles began in the Southern United States and elsewhere. Following their tour of America in August 1966, many were beginning to speculate that the Beatles were finished for good. By October, Paul McCartney had disappeared from the public spotlight, sparking even more rumors that the band was breaking up. When the Sgt. Pepper album was released, the "Paul is dead" conspiracy theory began to take root. A number of strange images and lyrics were discovered in both the artwork of the album, as well as in the music itself (played forwards and backwards) that led many to believe that not only was Paul replaced by a look-alike after dying in a car accident, but also that the "clues" were intentionally put into the album like a secret code.