- Posted January 19, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
The Magical Years of Beatlemania
I was hooked and bought every album, every single and cut out every article and picture I could find in newspapers, magazines including TV Guide.
Growing up in a small town in WV it was difficult to receive the current music so my brother rigged up a wire from his bedroom window across the creek behind our house so we could pick up the BBC on an old short wave radio. He was also in a band and when they would rehearse down in our basement I would sit on the steps and pretend they were The Beatles rehearsing!
When the movie A Hard Day's Night hit our local theater my friends and I saw it 8 times and did we scream...yes! I was determined to see them in person. In the spring of 1965 I heard that The Beatles were going to be in concert and wrote a letter to DJ Ringo Ron Riley at WLS in Chicago asking where they would be appearing and he wrote back telling me to contact WABC in NY. They forwarded my letter to Sid Bernstein Enterprises who was the promoter for the Shea Concert. The top ticket price was $5.65 and the concert program was $1.25.
NY is a long way from WV and I had never been to a big city so there was almost no hope of my going until family friends from Bergenfield, NJ visited us. They extended an invitation for me and a friend to come and stay with them and see The Beatles at Shea Stadium. My parents were reluctant but the friends assured them that we would be well taken care of and that was an understatement.
My friend and I traveled by bus to Bergenfield. The room we stayed in was decorated all Beatles including a Flip Your Wig game and Beatle beach tote bag. They went out of their way to make it a magical, wonderful, unforgettable experience. We got to see NYC, World's Fair, a wax museum with, of course, wax figures of The Beatles.
On August 15, 1965 they drove us to the concert and picked us up afterwards. It was a very hot, humid evening with thousands in the audience all chanting 'We Love You Beatles, Oh Yes We Do' while waiting. When The Beatles ran out onto the field the sound in the stadium was incredible with 55,000 + screaming teenagers, myself included.
The sound system back then wasn't what it is today and the sound came through the PA system speakers and it was difficult to hear. It was an amazing feeling seeing them and none of us knew it would be an historic concert; we were just caught up in the moment seeing The Beatles perform.
When the concert was over we bought Beatle buttons,
one read 'I'm a Beatle Fan...In Case of Emergency call Paul or Ringo!' I still have the ticket stub from the concert in my scrapbook. The next year on 8-15-66 we saw them again at DC Stadium and it was another wonderful concert experience.
I collected a lot of memorabilia duing that time including the concert programs from 1964, 1965 1966 as well as the script to A Hard Day's Night, the Beatles Fan Club Christmas record, a poster from 16 Magazine and many, many articles. Once a Beatles fan, always a Beatles fan!