The night that changed America sure wasn’t in 2014
I got through half an hour of the CBS’ clumsily titled “The Beatles: The Night That Changed America — A Grammy Salute” and then gave up. The problem is I have seen everyone from the Faux Beatles to Marshall Crenshaw perform terrific versions of Beatles songs and really, these versions, certainly anything anyone but Stevie Wonder or half the Beatles, the “les” if you will, were somewhat on the useless side.
Celebrating the 5 th anniversary of the Beatles performance on the Ed Sullivan Show, with Paul and Ringo in attendance along with the widows Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison, a very poor retrospective was cut with covers of the Beatles catalog and finally a performance by the remaining Beatles.
The problem is, it seemed like a very pale thing in comparison to the event itself. With the right Beatlemaniac (Mikal Gilmore’s Rolling Stone cover story was much much better) the story would tell itself. Get a good talking head, like a really big voiceover guy like Tom Hanks, and build to the actual show, show it in its entirety, and end with Macca/Starr performing their earliest hits.
There is no sense of occasion in the way CBS did it. 50 years from now, nobody will have have anything but the vaguest idea who Alicia Keys is. She will be a musical footnote. If this was stand as a testament, it must work outside the realms of musical fashion. It has to bypass it by remaining true to the occasion and not the latest pop flavor.
A huge missed opportunity. Go watch Robert Zemeckis “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” if you really wanna remember it.
All My Loving(partial) – Maroon 5
Ticket to Ride – Maroon 5
Don’t Let Me Down – John Mayer and Keith Urban
In My Life – Ed Sheeran
Let It Be – Alicia Keys and John Legend
Revolution – Imagine Dragons
Yesterday – Katy Perry
Fool on the Hill – Eurythmics
Here Comes the Sun – Brad Paisley and Pharrell Williams
Hey Bulldog – Dave Grohl and Jeff Lynne
Something – Jeff Lynne, Joe Walsh, and Dhani Harrison
While My Guitar Gently Weeps – Joe Walsh, Gary Clark Jr., and Dave Grohl
We Can Work It Out – Stevie Wonder
Matchbox – Ringo Starr
Boys – Ringo Starr
Yellow Submarine – Ringo Starr
Magical Mystery Tour – Paul McCartney
Birthday – Paul McCartney
Get Back – Paul McCartney
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band/With a Little Help From My Friends – Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr