Why 1964 Was The Year Of The Beatles
American Beatles fans, February 7, 1964 - AP Photo
The world was not ready for what would happen in 1964.
Four, unseeming lads with long mop-tops, slick suits, and scrutinous faces from Liverpool, one would not imagine The Beatles taking the world by storm. Only a year before, the boys could only manage to bring in fifteen people to watch the show. Now at the top of the charts in the UK, and with the help of their albums Please, Please Me and With the Beatles, the band gained traction overseas. Radio stations in the United States would repeatedly blast The Beatles’ songs over the airwaves due to sheer popularity and demand. Then, on the 17th of January in 1964, the band had its first concert outside of London. Following abruptly, they had a live performance, now in the Land of The Free, on February 9th, 1964. The Ed Sullivan Show stint proved to be a massive success, with around 73 million Americans, roughly 30% of the U.S. population at that time, glued on the telly. Consequently, on April 4th, 1964, The Beatles single-handedly occupied the top 5 spots of Billboard’s Hot 100 in over a week, with everyone only dreaming to achieve the same. Crazed fans, followed the group everywhere they went, most of them girls who’d fallen heads over heels for the music and apparent good looks of the boys. The army that was Beatlemania arrived with a vengeance, and would take no prisoners.
Monopolizing Billboard’s Top 5
The band’s numerous successes had been a delight, but the monumental feat of topping 1964’s Hot 100 chart, let alone bag the top 5 spots, hasn’t been heard of. Not in this dimension, at the very least.
5. Please, Please Me
Title track of the album of the same name, “Please, Please Me” was originally composed by Lennon but then modified by McCartney and George Martin later.
4. I Want to Hold Your Hand
A single made by Lennon and McCartney, its pre-orders exceeded a million copies in the United Kingdom. It was the first record the Beatles made with four-track equipment.
3. She Loves You
Released in 1963, the single surpassed record sales in the UK. In 2009, it was dubbed the number one best-seller single in the United Kingdom.
2. Twist and Shout
The only cover song in this lineup, John Lennon took the role for lead vocals in this track.
1. Can’t Buy Me Love
Part of the album A Hard Day’s Night, the song was written with looming pressure from the previous success of “I Want To Hold Your Hand“, which had already positioned itself at the top in America.