It is safe to say that in February of 1964, the United States was still in shock. On November 22, 1963, John F. Kennedy had been assassinated in Dallas. His assassin had then been shot down himself, leaving a veil of uncertainty over the entire tragedy. A man of perceived youth and energy, his death was especially shaking to the young people of the nation, who saw him as the pioneer of a new generation of Americans. In a matter of moments, however, that new wave of optimism had been silenced.
Less than three months later, the Beatles landed in NY at JFK Airport. To pretend that the arrival of any band could heal the wounds of such grating national tragedy is absurd, but when the Beatles came to the United States, they brought their own brand of youthful optimism along. Three thousand screaming fans welcomed them as they exited their plane, starting what would be a non-stop lovefest for the Fab Four.
Two days later, they appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show, playing five songs: ‘She Loves You’, ‘Till There Was You’, ‘All My Lovin’’, I Saw Her Standing There’, and ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand.’ Their appearance gave young women something to pine over, young men something to aspire to, and parents something to roll their eyes and scoff at.
More than that, though, the Beatle’s rise to popularity gave a jump start to the youth movements that would drive the 1960s and make it the decade we remember today. It’s hard to quantify the impact the Beatles had on our nation and the world, but the fact that no matter what age group you search you’ll find countless fans does speak to the lasting importance of their music and the message they brought with them.
In the 5 years between their arrival in the USA and their breakup, the Beatles created a wealth of history all on their own. Here are some of my favorite resources for Beatles history:
That’s one of the greatest things about the Beatles for a young fellow like me. Fifty years later, you can find out anything you want to know about the band. They left such an impact that information about their story is still in high demand today and you can find Beatles experts everywhere who weren’t even alive during the bands 8 year reign as the most popular group on earth.
Got a favorite resource for Beatles trivia and info? Let us know!