Friday, February 07, 2014

Remembering John, Paul, George, and Ringo

On February 7th, 1964 the Beatles came to America.  This was exactly 50 years ago today.  For most of my generation this was huge.  On Sunday, February 9th, they made the first of three appearances on the Ed Sullivan show.  Their first appearance was one of the most widely viewed television shows in history.  At the time America was still in mourning over the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.  The Beatles were a burst of joy.  Most young people today have little appreciation of the Beatles and the “Beatlemania” they created in much of the world.  Soon after they came to America I became a teenager.  When they broke up as a band in 1970 I was nineteen years old.  Their music was the soundtrack of my teenage years and even today I have all of their music on my iPod.  It may be difficult for some of you to understand but the Beatles changed my life.  If I listed all the people who have influenced me, the Beatles would be on that list.  I never saw the Beatles perform.  The people that did see the Beatles could barely hear them because all the girls screamed so loud at their concerts.  The Beatles and I grew up together.  Their early work was typical pop music even if it was a totally different sound from most of what played on the radio at the time.  As they matured, and their fans matured with them, the lyrics got more serious and the music evolved.  I was very upset when a deranged fan murdered John Lennon in 1970.  In the early 2000’s I finally saw Paul McCartney.  I have seen many, many famous rock stars but when Paul walked out on stage and opened his set with the Beatle song called “Hello, Goodbye” I cried a little.  Throughout his concert, as he played many Beatles songs, the memories and emotions of my youth came flooding back.  It was probably the most emotional concert I have ever attended.  Music is a powerful force whatever type you like.  I will listen to the Beatles until the day I die and I think many people will be listening to their music a hundred years from now because their songs are timeless.  

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