With the 50th anniversary of the famous Ed Sullivan appearance, there’s a lot of mention how the youth of America flocked to the Beatles in 1964. But there had to be people of teen/college age who didn’t like the Beatles at all. Know anyone like that, or maybe even yourself? And did they ever come around?
I can honestly day I was not a Beatles fan in the slightest in 1964.
“I Want to Hold Your Hand” is arguably the first major hit song recording in North America (or at the least it broke previous records.) So even if only a minority liked the group, they were still unusually popular.
Are you missing a word in your first sentence or something? I don’t get at all what you’re saying.
I don’t get your second sentence either. Unless you mean “a minority of the entire population of the world.” Certainly the overwhelming majority of people who bought rock ‘n’ roll records in 1964 liked The Beatles.
No, I think I’ll leave it as it is. After all this IS the smartest forum on the internet.
some songs from 64
Not Fade Away - Rolling Stones
I Just Want to Make Love to You - Rolling Stones
You Really Got Me - Kinks
Smokestack Lightning - Yardbirds
Good Morning, School Girl - Yardbirds
I’m a Man - Yardbirds
She Loves You - Beatles
Please Mister Postman - Beatles
A Hard Day’s Night - Beatles
rock on Fab Four
they sucked from the start
I’ll put myself in the “come around” category, but it was a mighty swift coming around!
I’ve told this story so many times over the years, but it seems appropriate now to drag it out one more time.
I had been listening, devotedly, to rock ‘n’ roll on Top 40 radio for just over a year in early 1964. I remember with absolute clarity the first time I heard “I Want to Hold Your Hand.”
The disk jockey on the air at that moment was a legend in our market, and well-known for his outsized personality and almost manic on-air delivery. But the outro he gave for “I Want to Hold Your Hand” was over the top even by his standards. He raved on and on about this new band from England that was taking the entire world by storm, and said that they were going to be the biggest thing since Elvis.
I remember virtually word-for-word what I said to myself upon hearing this: “Well, if that’s the kind of music those guys from England think we like over here, they’re crazy!”
That’s how utterly different “I Want to Hold Your Hand” was from anything I had heard up to that point.
Of course, it took less than a week for me to completely change my view! I got it…in spades…and I’m still getting it today. Anyone who scoffs at the notion that The Beatles were a life-changing experience for millions simply wasn’t there.
I didn’t really care about the Beatles till Rubber Soul came out. And then, pow!
I had more important issues to deal with in 1964, like being -5 years old.
Perhaps so, but we have proof now that at least some members of it write gibberish.
I had been living in an off-campus rooming house, and one night I was talked into watching Ed Sullivan on the only TV in the house (the same TV we watched the Kennedy assassination events on). I had been listening almost exclusively to classical music at that point. But when I heard the Beatles, it was not just another rock band. Their sound was different from the start. But there always were people who didn’t care for them . . . although they did understand the group’s uniqueness.
My sixth grade teacher hated them.
Sure. There were old school rockers who liked Elvis and Chuck Berry and thought the Beatles were just a bunch of foreigners singing lightweight pop - the early sixties equivalent of One Direction. And there were folk music fans who thought that it was people like Bob Dylan and Pete Seeger who were making serious music while the Beatles were making fluff.
At least you *had *issues to deal with. I hadn’t even been conceived in February 1964.
I was heavily into Rock N Roll at the time, and didn’t dislike the Beatles, but they seemed unremarkable, and the screaming teenie girl devotion didn’t make the music sound any better. But just because it was contemporary culture, I made a dance band arrangement medley of some of their first tunes. Tthe dance band didn’t like it much, and played it like a polka, so I stopped trying to “educate” them. Their loss, I’m sure.
Some artists were embracing the music, like Keely Smith, who put out a great Beatles cover album. Not common at the time for mainstream artists to do so; she stuck her neck out.
A few short years later, I was blown away by the Sgt. Pepper album. A lot of musical maturity and innovation went into it; it was a far cry from I want to hold your gland.
I think Bryan said -5
In Goldfinger he says something like that’s as bad as listening to the Beatles without earmuffs
Dislike for the Beatles among older adults in 1964 was so common that it’s easy to misread an adult’s comment on them in that year as being praise, when actually it was intended as an insult to them, as in this snopes entry:
The claim (false, but still semi-believed) that there wasn’t a single hubcap stolen during the hour that they were on Ed Sullivan sounds like it’s a boast about their popularity, but really it’s implying that no one but juvenile delinquents listened to their music. Hatred of rock and roll was common among adults. Such adults could barely tolerate the stuff that sounded a little like the big band and crooner music that they listened to, but it was too obvious that the Beatles weren’t even trying to sound (or dress) like the musicians that those adults liked.
I didn’t. I 'm English, born in 1948, and first became aware of the Beatles in 1962 when their first release Love Me Do began to get airtime on the radio. I was 14 at the time and my friends and I were crazy about American blues, r&b and rock’n’roll. And what particularly bugged the hell out of us were the piss-awful British covers of American hits, which robbed the artists we loved of fame in the UK. I’m thinking of stuff like Shout by the Isley Brothers, ruined by Lulu who had a hit with it, Twist and Shout by the same, which the Beatles covered and had many at the time thinking it was their song, ditto Please Mr Postman by the Marvelettes, oh the list was endless.
And you have to remember that at that time in the UK the Beatles were the ‘respectable’ group, acceptable to parents, with their cheeky grins, moptops and ‘Beatle’ jackets. We loathed them for that too and the fact that their fanbase at the time was silly young girls. The Stones were the rebels, the ‘in your face/fuck you’ group and even though they too covered the music of our idols like Bo Diddley and Chuck Berry we knew that their love for them was as great as ours and their cover versions were just great.
Of course, I learned later that the Beatles idolized the same people w did and weren’t the airhead ‘pop’ group that they’d been represented as. But that was later and I never did warm to them as I did the Stones.
How about the Yardbirds, the Kinks, and the Animals?