The Beatles perform at the Ed Sullivan Show – NYS Music – NYS Music


58 years ago, the Beatles performed on The Ed Sullivan in New York, creating one of the most defining moments in television history. A record 73 million people watched the Fab Four perform “All My Loving”, “Till There Was You”, “She Loves You”, “I Saw Her Standing There” and “I Want to Hold Your Hand”. ”

The Beatles with Ed Sullivan.

Comprised of John, Paul, George and Ringo, the Beatles are one of the most influential bands to ever exist. The band was formed in 1960 in Liverpool, England. They spent the first two years playing at smaller clubs in Europe and honed their craft after playing eight hours a day in Hamburg, Germany. It was not until their performance on “Val Parnell’s Sunday Night at the London Palladium” and the release of their first LP please make me happy that Beatlemania really started.

Please Please Me by The Beatles full album.

Urban legend has it that Ed Sullivan first heard of the band when he and his wife were at a London airport on their way back to New York and saw 1,500 screaming fans welcoming the Beatles back from tour successful in Sweden.

In fact, Sullivan discovered the Beatles before that, thanks to his Talent Booker. Jack Babband agent based in London Pierre Prichard. Sullivan was eager to book the band but needed a sales pitch. Prichard said they had just performed on the Royal Variety Show where they were the first ‘long-haired boys’ to be asked to appear before Queen Elizabeth II.

The Beatles meet Queen Elizabeth II

On November 11, 1963, Beatles manager Brian Epstein met Sullivan in the Hotel Delmonico in New York, and the deal was done with a handshake. The Beatles have been booked for three performances, two live and one recorded rehearsal.

Ahead of the first performance of the Sullivan show, the band’s record “I Want To Hold Your Hand” was leaked ahead of its planned US release. The label was unable to stop the radio from playing it, so they released the LP ahead of schedule, and it went to #1 on the Billboard charts before the end of the month.

The flight

The Beatles flew to America on February 7, 1964. When they arrived at the airport, they were surprised at how many people came to see them. Paul McCartney commented on it during the Anthology sessions in the 90s.

There were millions of children at the airport, which no one expected. We heard about it in the air. There were reporters on the plane, and the pilot had rung ahead and said, “Tell the boys there’s a big crowd waiting for them.” We thought, ‘Wow! God, we really made it.

5,000 fans, mostly young girls, were packed onto the balcony of one of JFK’s buildings, waving banners and shouting at the top of their voices.

They were able to attract so many people because the band’s American record label promised that everyone who showed up at the airport would be given a one-dollar bill and a t-shirt. The Capitol Records receptionists would answer the phone, “Capitol Records – The Beatles are coming.” All the radios were talking about it too.

The Ed Sullivan Show

Paul McCartney spoke about their appearance on the show also during the Anthology sessions.

It was very important. We came out of nowhere with funny hair, looking like puppets or something. It was very influential. I think that’s really one of the big things that broke us – the hairstyle more than the music, originally. Many people’s fathers had wanted to scare us away. They told their children, “Make no mistake, they wear wigs.”

The band rehearsed the day before, and George Harrison was feeling bad, and their road manager Neil Aspinall replaced him to mark everyone’s position.

Neil Aspinall replacing George Harrison during rehearsals.

Their live debut broke a TV viewership record, with a record 73 million people tuning in to the show. The band even received a telegram from Elvis Presley and his manager, Colonel Tom Parker, wishing the band luck. Harrison made a witty remark about the show, when Anthology sessions.

We were aware that EdSullivan was the most important because we got a telegram from Elvis and the Colonel. And I heard that for the duration of the show there was no crime reported, or very little. When the Beatles were on EdSullivaneven the criminals rested for ten minutes.

The band came and performed “All My Loving” to an audience full of deafening screams of teenage girls. Then they played “Til There Was You”, and as the song played, a camera cut to each band member introducing them, and when the camera cut to John Lennon, the caption read “SORRY GIRLS. IT IS MARRIED.”

The band played three more songs, “She Loves You”, “I Saw Her Standing There” and their number one hit “I Want To Hold Your Hand”. After the show, the Beatles were taken to the Playboy Club under police escort.

The Beatles’ success on The Ed Sullivan show paved the way for the British invasion, for bands like The Rolling Stones and The Animals. The group has also inspired the works of many bands, such as the Ramones song “You’re Gonna Kill That Girl”, a parody of the Beatles song “You’re Gonna Lose That Girl”.


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