In the 1960s, the Beatles exploded on to the public scene, seemingly out of nowhere as the band's formative years of constant performing at home and in Hamburg, and Brian Epstein's grooming, finally paid off beyond their wildest dreams. Accompanying new interviews of the remaining Beatles, their associates and fans as well as archival interviews of the late ones, this film features footage of the heady concert years of 1963 to 66 when the band became a worldwide cultural phenomena topping them all. Furthermore, it also follows how the Fab Four began to change and grow while the excitement of Beatlemania began to sour their lives into an intolerable slog they needed to escape from to become more than what their fans wanted. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (email@example.com)
After Brian Epstein was introduced in the film, his interview said he first saw them at the Cavern Club. They showed a picture of The Beatles at the Cavern Club with Ringo Starr. When Mr. Epstein first saw the Beatles, Pete Best was the drummer. See more »
New Footage from Fans, New Interviews, Bring Beatles to a New Generation
The new Ron Howard hit documentary about the Beatles, Eight Days a Week The Touring Years, is a love letter to the musical group and the exuberance of youth. Using sometimes grainy footage of early performances up through the final live performance at Candlestick Park (and the final-final live performance for a few people, including unsuspecting passers-by, from the roof of their recording studio), the Beatles as a phenomenon still amaze. They not only had a brutal tour schedule in this period, 1962-1966, they transformed the music industry and changed the culture through their truly overwhelming and unprecedented worldwide popularity. That popularity led to nearly riotous conditions for their concerts and forced promoters into using stadium venues for the first time. They just couldn't risk the hordes of disappointed fans in a conventional, smaller-capacity concert hall. It also forced the band away from stage performances, where they made their money, and into the studio where they could actually hear themselves think. Right. They were musicians. For a long time and during this intense period, they were also very good friends and colleagues. The members were strengthened by their closeness, always having each other to rely on. In an archived interview, George says something like, "I always felt sorry for Elvis. He didn't have that. It was just him." If a decision had to be made, they all made it, including the decision not to play in segregated venues in the United States, a provision included in their contracts. It was 52 years ago that the Beatles' first appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, an event watched by nearly 40 percent of Americans. They came on the scene during a tumultuous time here, amidst civil rights and Vietnam War protests, and only a few months after the assassination of President Kennedy. And while the boys appear sweet and lively in these old clips, there's that clap of nostalgic pain, tooknowing what happened later and knowing what was lost, including youth itself. They were So Young when crushing fame and amazing music happened to, around, and within them. That they managed themselves with such grace is astonishing. Ron Howard and producer Giles Martin (son of Beatles' recording producer George Martin) have done a great job in creating a film to introduce a new generation of fans to the group. Recent interviews with Paul (looks old!) and Ringo (looks great!) bring out new information and insights, and a worldwide call for footage from people who took their film cameras to the concerts brought lots of new visuals with a startling sense of unstaged immediacy. And there's lots of head-filling, memory-sparking music too.
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