Beatles Invade Again on 50th Anniversary

The Beatles

Get ready for the second coming of Beatlemania. The 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ American debut on the Ed Sullivan is coming on February 9, and their sound will again invade the airwaves. The performance by the two surviving Beatles, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, during the 2014 Grammy Awards whet fans’ appetite for the anniversary telecast, which promises to be special.

CBS carried the Beatles’ first live televised performances in the United States on The Ed Sullivan Show.  So, it is only fitting that the network is celebrating the anniversary with a commemorative special.

CBS will devote Sullivan’s old time slot — 8 p.m. (7 p.m. CST) — to The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles.  The show will feature a concert taped in Los Angeles the day after the Grammys. The event featured several generations of musicians who grew up on the Beatles performing their songs. Being edited down for the two-hour television special, the concert included performances by the Eurythmics, Dave Grohl, Alicia Keys, Ed Sheeran, Katy Perry, Keith Urban, John Legend, John Mayer, Stevie Wonder, Brad Paisley, Maroon 5 and many others. Monty Python founding member Eric Idle, a Beatles associate, narrated video biographies on each Beatle for the show. As they did during the Grammy telecast, McCartney and Starr performed in the tribute, with the families of John Lennon and George Harrison enjoying the spectacle. The television special will also include footage of the Beatles’ 1964 appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show.

There are several other shows and events that will celebrate the Beatles in the next week. For example, the Late Show with David Letterman, which is filmed in the old Ed Sullivan Theatre, will feature artists singing Beatles songs every night the week before the anniversary.

Why the hoopla? It is hard for people today to appreciate the impact the Beatles’ appearance had and why they will invade again on the 50th anniversary. First, one must realize that The Ed Sullivan Show was a national institution in 1964. Most families had one television set and made it a tradition every Sunday night to watch the show together. An estimated 45.3% of U.S. households with televisions watched the Beatles on February 9, 1964. More than 73 million people, or one in three Americans then, watched. Most people do not remember that they were on the show three weeks in a row! By the end of the month, they had seduced the country and transformed the culture with their haircuts, wardrobe, British humor and, of course, timeless music.

The Beatlemania explosion changed the music industry forever as acts began writing their own songs, playing their own instruments and catering to the American teens. Before then, there were crooners and the King – Elvis Presley – but they didn’t write or play most of their songs. Black artists did, but they did not have mainstream appeal then.

As the 50th anniversary approaches, it is amazing to again realize that the Beatles continue to invade and capture America’s attention. Generations have grown up loving the Beatles music. As Grohl noted in the Los Angeles Times, the Beatles were his mother’s favorite band, his and now his daughter’s. The Beatles’ songs are covered regularly in movies, on shows like The Voice or by other recording artists. There is the Love Cirque du Soleil show in Las Vegas. There have been several movies, such as Across the Universe, that used their music. Paul McCartney even played the Super Bowl half-time show in 2005 and sang Beatles songs. They have not lost their appeal after 50 years.

By Dyanne Weiss

Sources:
New York Times
Los Angeles Times
CNN
Los Angeles Times

Source: New York Times: Beatle Fans Hear Yesterday Again

2 Responses to Beatles Invade Again on 50th Anniversary

  1. Bob Shields February 9, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    The show was tremendous. Hope it will be released on Blu Ray in high res audio.

    Reply
  2. Chris February 3, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    I will never forget watching that 1st appearance on the Sullivan show. I’d never even heard of the Beatles, but seeing them that night was just….stunning. I became a lifetime fan in that instant. Now, if only some great engineers with access to their original master tapes would finally do a great job of re-releasing each album. So far, each ‘remaster’ falls far short of the original records. My original records have more fidelity than any of the later releases, including vinyl. All have compressed the sound. Can’t someone do the Beatles’ music justice?

    Reply

We will read your comment immediately so leave a remark!

RSS Guardian Express

  • NBA Playoffs Toronto Raptors Pull Even With Brooklyn Nets After Game Two April 23, 2014
    The Toronto Raptors came into their game two Tuesday night tilt with the Brooklyn Nets hoping to pull even in their NBA playoff series. The Raptors overcame another slow start in game two to take a 45-39 lead heading into the half. Despite committing eleven turnovers in the first half, the Raptors were able to […]
    Eric Kummel
  • ‘Friends’ Reunion Not Happening Says Courteney Cox [Video] April 23, 2014
    If anyone out there was holding on to a thread of hope that there just might be some sort of Friends reunion in the works, Courteney Cox has made it clear that it will not be happening. At least, not anytime soon. Cox appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman on Monday evening, most likely […]
    Josh Taub
  • Men Can Stop Trying to Sound Sexy April 23, 2014
    Men can stop trying to sound sexy because, according to a new study, it just does not work. While women are capable of adjusting their voices to sound sexy, a new study found that men are unable to do the same. Society has come up with a stereotype of what sexy sounds like, and apparently […]
    Ashley Campbell
  • Startup Companies Are Sprouting Quickly and Empowering Hundreds April 23, 2014
    The inventors of today’s world have unleashed more resources and equipment of a technological kind than any previous decade or generation, and that blessing is only widening exponentially as startup companies are empowering hundreds as they sprout up in many areas. There are more entrepreneurs, technology developers, social media experts, and business gurus
    Brad Johnson
  • Keyshawn Johnson Arrested After Fight With Ex-Girlfriend April 23, 2014
    Former NFL star Keyshawn Johnson was arrested and jailed after a fight with his ex-girlfriend that reportedly resulted in a gash to the woman’s hand. The Los Angeles County Sherriff’s deputies arrested and charged the ESPN analyst with misdemeanor spousal battery early Monday, after responding to a call at his home in Calabasas, California, according […]
    Rick Sarlat

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 630 other subscribers

Quantcast