Saturday

Remember This? The British Invasion

We are not talking about the Redcoats here, but rather the 1960's UK "invasion" of pop music and culture to the US that brought The Beatles, The Who, The Rolling Stones and many others to these shores.

Following a rather bemused Huntley-Brinkley Report segment on The Beatles shown in late 1963, the release of "I Wanna Hold Your Hand", caused interest to grow in this new phenomenon. Follow this up with a 1964 live US TV appearance on the hugely popular Ed Sullivan Show (seen by about 45% of the entire US viewing audience), and we were off to the races.

Much has been written about the Beatles in particular, but with the passage of time it's perhaps hard to realize the huge impact they had at the time; not just upon the public, but other musicians and bands that followed them. In April 1964 the Beatles held the number 1-5 chart spots in the US - a feat yet to be challenged.

A lot of the UK bands at the time came from the Liverpool area of England, and Liverpool's river Mersey gave the name to Merseybeat, referring to one of the main music styles in the "first wave" of the British Invasion.


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