The Beatles first Ed Sullivan Show February 9th, 1964
On this day 51 years ago, The Beatles made their first live American television appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.
At 8 o’clock 73 million people gathered in front their TVs to see The Beatles’s first live performance in USA. 60% of the televisions in the U.S. were tuned in to The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show.
“It was very important. We came out of nowhere with funny hair, looking like marionettes or something. That was very influential. I think that was really one of the big things that broke us – the hairdo more than the music, originally. A lot of people’s fathers had wanted to turn us off. They told their kids, ‘Don’t be fooled, they’re wearing wigs.’
A lot of fathers did turn it off, but a lot of mothers and children made them keep it on. All these kids are now grown-up, and telling us they remember it. It’s like, ‘Where were you when Kennedy was shot?’ I get people like Dan Aykroyd saying, ‘Oh man, I remember that Sunday night; we didn’t know what had hit us – just sitting there watching Ed Sullivan’s show.’ Up until then there were jugglers and comedians like Jerry Lewis, and then, suddenly, The Beatles!”
– Paul McCartney (Anthology)
All My Loving
Til There Was You
She Loves You
I Saw Her Standing There
I Wanna Hold Your Hand
Dennis Mitchell of the syndicated “Breakfast with The Beatles” radio show recalls the night fiftyone years ago on February 9th, 1964, when the lads from Liverpool made their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show: