As I read about the 60th anniversary of The Beatles release of Please Please Me in March of 1963, I get a little wistful, like I wasn’t invited to the party. The Beatles released their first album in 1963? How could I have missed it? I’ve been a diehard Beatle fan for most of my life, for crying out loud! But, I guess it only proves what great strides we’ve made in media and communications. Or, could it be that we didn’t really have an overwhelming interest in England until The Beatles pulled the curtain back and revealed just how cool it was over there?
All I know is that when Capitol Records released Meet The Beatles in the U.S. in January of 1964, and then they appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show for three consecutive weeks, all hell broke loose. Beatlemania was here! But first it was there. Word has it that Ed had run into a mob scene when he’d flown out of Heathrow Airport in London. The Beatles were returning from some dates in France and Spain, and the sight of their throngs of screaming fans prompted him to book them on his show.
At any rate, this is a commemoration of a Beatles release that illustrates the separate worlds we Beatle fans once lived in. We got our Beatle albums, up to Sergeant Pepper, from America’s Capitol Records, who borrowed tracks from one album and added them to another to create bastardized versions of what The Beatles released in England. We didn’t realize the Please Please Me album existed, let alone that it was The Beatles maiden release from almost a year before we knew anything about them.
Oh well. I’ve gone back and filled in the blanks from The Beatles beginnings and I’m a better man for it. I don’t love them any less for being left out of their initial, remarkable achievement. And it’s a great album. I still love the excitement and energy that comes across when the needle hits the vinyl. In fact, I think I’ll put it on and dance around the living room, as long as nobody’s watching.