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4 1964 is historical date in the history of popular music.
On this day, the Beatles held the FIVE TOP POSITIONS on
the American charts.
in 1964 the group topped the American charts from the beginning
of February to the end of June.
almost six months!
of course a remarkable achievement in itself, but there
were at least two other factors that made it even more remarkable.
it was unusual that British artists troubled the US charts
in the first place. Popular music in the US was then, as
it still is today, dominated by American artists. Who would
have thought that four youngsters from Liverpool with strange
haircuts and even stranger accents would take complete control
of the American charts?
the biggest achievement of it all was that all the songs,
with the exception of Twist
And Shout, were composed by John Lennon and Paul McCartney,
the group's two front men. At the time, it was unusual for
artists to compose their own music. Elvis Presley, for example,
America's most popular artist before the Beatles, was a
singer and performer, not a songwriter.
Beatles insisted on doing everything their own way. They
didn't necessarily respect rules or traditions within the
pop genre. They did what they wanted to do. Hence, on April
4 1964, the Billboard charts in the US looked as follows:
Buy Me Love
Want to Hold Your Hand
first hit in the US was I Want To Hold Your Hand. The song
went to number 1 on the US charts on February 1 1964, and
stayed at the top for seven weeks.
days later, on February 9, the Beatles performed live at
the Ed Sullivan TV show in the US. 73 million American viewers
tuned in to watch, a new record.
invasion of the US charts was followed by a successful American
tour in August and September 1964. In New York, the group
was introduced to Bob Dylan. Dylan's influence was soon
to be traced in the Beatles' music, particularly in songs
like I'm A Loser
Got To Hide Your Love Away, both penned by Lennon.
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