Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Talkin' Beatles, Ringo and the Phlop

On this day in 1964 the Beatles began their first full American tour. They had created mass hysteria in February with appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show, and now they were coming back to seal the deal. Which they surely did.

They may even have been responsible for one of the worst flops in baseball pennant race history. No one has a better explanation for what unnerved the Philadelphia Phillies, who blew a 6 1/2-game lead by losing 10 straight immediately after the tour ended.

(One undeniable baseball fact: A scheduled day off for the Beatles became a date at Municipal Stadium in Kansas City after Athletics owner Charles O. Finley offered $150,000 to bring in the Fab Four, who appropriately opened the show with "Kansas City.'')

The tour was a whirlwind affair, featuring 34 concerts in 32 days. The lads typically opened with "Twist and Shout'' and played a 12-song set that was over in a half-hour or less. It featured jelly bean flinging teenie boppers, a death threat to Ringo, and a post-Hurricane Bob date in Jacksonville where they had to nail down the drummer's kit because of high winds.

As a public service to fans who may have forgotten, never knew, or were preoccupied at the time with "Goldfinger: The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack'', here are the dates and venues:

Aug. 19,Cow Palace San Francisco
Aug. 20, Convention Center, Las Vegas
Aug. 21, Coliseum, Seattle
Aug. 22, Empire Stadikum, Vancouver
Aug. 23, Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles
Aug. 26, Red Rocks Ampitheater, Denver
Aug. 27, Cincinnati Gardens, Cincinnati
Aug. 28-29, Forest Hills Stadium, NYC
Aug. 30, Convention Hall, Atlantic City
Sept. 2, Convention Center, Philadelphia
Sept. 3, Indiana State Fair Coliseum, Indianapolis
Sept. 4, Milwaukee Arena, Milwaukee
Sept. 5, International Ampitheater, Chicago
Sept. 6, Olympia Stadium, Detroit
Sept. 7, Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto
Sept. 8, Forum, Montreal
Sept. 11, Gator Bowl, Jacksonville
Sept. 12, Boston Gardens, Boston
Sept. 13, Civic Center, Baltimore
Sept. 14, Civic Arena, Pittsburgh
Sept. 15, Public Auditorium, Cleveland
Sept. 16, City Park Stadium, New Orleans
Sept. 17, Municipal Stadium, Kansas City
Sept. 18, Memorial Coliseum, Dallas
Sept. 20, Paramount Theater, NYC

Don't mean to shill for, but that's a pretty cool T-shirt...


  1. First U.S. show was a few months earlier, they stopped in D.C. between live Ed Sullivan appearances in NYC and Miami Beach.

  2. My little sister, Sandi, ever got over being forbidden to attend the Jacksonville show.