Press releases from the fab days of Beatlemania


(CBS press release issued Dec. 13, 1963)

The Beatles, wildly popular quartet of English recording stars, will make their first trip to the United States Feb. 7 for their American television debut on "The Ed Sullivan Show," Sundays, Feb. 9 and 16 (8:00-9:00 PM, PST) on the CBS Television Network. Their first appearance will be done at Studio 50 in New York, and their second at the Hotel Deauville in Miami Beach, Fla.

The fantastic popularity of the Beatles in England has received considerable attention not only in British newspapers but also in the American press. Their first record release is scheduled for January.

The Beatles count among their fans Queen Elizabeth and Princess Margaret, who saw them in a Royal Command Performance. The mass hysteria surrounding their personal appearances has brought a new word to the British vocabulary, Beatlemania.

The Beatles range in age from 21 to 23 and write their own songs, which sold two and a half million records in England this year. They are George Harrison, who sings and plays the lead guitar; John Lennon, who sings and plays the rhythm guitar and the harmonica; Paul McCartney, who sings and plays the bass guitar, and Ringo Starr, who plays drums and occasionally sings.


(Capitol Records press release dated Jan. 9, 1964)

From Fred Martin, Director of Public Relations, Capitol Records, Inc., 1750 N. Vine Street, HO 2-6352:

HOLLYWOOD--Jan. 20 has been set as target date for release of Capitol's Beatles LP, "Meet the Beatles."

The English rock-and-roll group's single, I Want To Hold Your Hand, released Dec. 30, has become one of the fastest-selling records in the label's history. Though in release only one week, the Beatles disk hit as high as 80 on some tradepaper charts.

Stanley E. Gortikov, Vice President and General Manger of Capitol Records Distributing Corp., also disclosed that, in addition to the single and album, Capitol would issue an EP. Though intended primarily for juke-box operators, the four-disk will be made available to all CRDC customers.

The Beatles will arrive in New York Feb. 8. The next day, they will make the first of three appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show. The second will be done live from Miami Beach the following week, Sunday, Feb. 16, with the third yet to be scheduled.

England's--and probably the world's--hottest entertainment attraction crack the U.S. record market with the unprecedented achievement of having sold over 3,000,000 records in Great Britain in only one year. One third of that figure was accounted for last Nov. when "I Want To Hold Your Hand" came out. Though release date was Nov. 29, the disk had racked up 1,000,000 advance orders by Nov. 28.

As a result of their phenomenal popularity, The Beatles have become the No. 1 topic of discussion on all levels of British society. They even headlined a Royal Command Performance last fall.

Their impending trip to the United States has been heralded as astounding coverage in the press. They have already been written up in Time, Newsweek, New Yorker, New York Times, Vogue, and other national magazines. Life, Saturday Evening Post, Esquire, Seventeen, and Saturday Review are preparing articles. Wire services have moved thousands of words about the group and at least one major newspaper, the Baltimore Sun, saw fit to write an editorial about the Beatles.

In the Dec. 30 issue, the Sun discoursed on the riots that have attended nearly all the Beatles appearances in England and wondered if the same would happen here. The Sun wound up saying: "America had better take thought as to how it will deal with the invasion...Indeed a restrained 'Beatles go home' might be just the thing." In addition to massive print coverage, the Beatles were seen here in five-minute film clips on both the Huntley-Brinkley and Walter Cronkite newscasts. Jack Paar last Friday (1/3), in an obvious attempt to scoop arch-foe Ed Sullivan, ran a videotape of the Beatles obtained by NBC.


(Capitol press release dated Jan. 13, 1964)


You probably have heard of the Beatles, an English rock-and-roll group. If not, you will sooner or later. Their new record, "I Want To Hold Your Hand," looks to become the fastest-selling record in history. According to our projections, it should reach the magical -- and frankly, usually mythical -- 1,000,000 mark by Jan. 15. An album, "Meet the Beatles," won't be released until Jan. 20, yet Capitol already has 240,000 advance orders. Ed Sullivan has booked them for three live appearances on his show, beginning Feb. 9. Like it or not, Beatlemania is becoming a fact of life here, just as it has in Britain.

Beverly Hills hair stylist Gene Shacove has created, with some prodding by our P.R. department, a new Beatle cut. (As you can see, it looks better on Neile Adams than it does on a Beatle.) (Editor's note: Neile Adams was the then-wife of actor Steve McQueen)

Enclosed is an assortment of photos and editorial matter which, we believe, will make an interesting feature for your readers, especially the youngers girls. When it is available, we also will send you a copy of the album.

Sincerely yours,

Fred Martin
Public Relations Director

P.S. In cities with more than one newspaper, this kit is exclusive to you.


(Capitol press release dated Jan. 29, 1964)

Like 'em or not, The Beatles have become the biggest thing in pop music since Elvis Presley turned up a decade ago.

The Beatles' first American single, "I Want To Hold Your Hand," was released by Capitol Dec. 30. One week later, it was the No. 1 record in the country on three out of four record tradepaper charts. The following week, it was tops on all listings. Early in its third week of release, it passed the million mark in sales, a fact which is at this writing being certified in an audit by the Record Industry Association of America.

Capitol issued its album "Meet the Beatles," on Jan. 20. By Jan 27, it passed 400,000 in sales. The LP, too, appeared on the charts after a week on the market. As far as can be determined, nobody, not even Presley, has achieved such rapid volume with a single or an LP.

It should be noted, too, that all this is happening without the group ever having set foot in the United States. That, however, will be remedied Friday afternoon Feb. 7 when the group arrives at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport for appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show, the first of which will be aired Feb. 9.


Last week it was disclosed that The Beatles will give three concerts during their U.S. trip. The first is scheduled the night of Feb. 11 at the Coliseum in Washington, D.C.

The following night, The Beatles will give two concerts at, of all places, Carnegie Hall. The first begins at 7:30, the second at 10:00 and the New York Police Department is still wondering how it will get one crowd out and the other in.

First public announcement of the Beatles' Carnegie appearances was made in the New York papers last Sunday (1/26). The advertisement stated that tickets would be available only at the Carnegie Hall box office, which would be open at 9:00 a.m. Monday. By 3:00 p.m. Jan. 27, the concerts -- 2700 seats for each performance -- were completely sold out.

Voyle Gilmore, Artists & Repertoire Vice President for Capitol said he would fly to New York and personally record the Carnegie Hall concerts. The resulting album -- to be titled "The Beatles at Carnegie Hall" -- will probably be issued in April.


Meanwhile, it is say to say that, before the Beatles arrive, there will not be a major American periodical which will not at least have a Beatle article in the works.

Among those already out with sizable pieces chronicling Beatlemania are: Life, Time, Newsweek, Saturday Review, New Yorker, McCall's, Mademoiselle, Vogue, New York Times Magazine and ad infinitum. Wire services have moved thousands of words about the phenomenally successful English group, and the jam-up of media requesting interviews with The Beatles is quickly getting out of control.

In the past few weeks, Beatlemania has done a lot more than sell a lot of records.

A Beatle-cut hairdo was created by Hollywood hairstylist Gene Shacove and among his customers now sporting the new coiffure are Janet Leigh and the Mmes. Milton Berle and Steve McQueen. A record store in New York has tied-in with a neighboring barber shop, the latter offering a free Beatle hair-cut with every copy of Capitol's "Meet the Beatles" and vice-versa.


Beatle fan clubs are sprouting like crabgrass, and Beatle wigs are the rage on high school campuses. United Artists has announced that a Beatles movie, as yet untitled and wihout a finished script, will begin shooting in March In England.

Beatle buttons, Beatle sweatshirts, and even Beatlenut ice cream are being readied for the marketplace. Where it will all end is an absolute mystery. All that is known is that Beatlemania is off to a more riotous start than anybody, including the Beatles, ever dreamed.


(CBS press release dated Feb. 3, 1964)

The Beatles, wildly popular British vocal group and instrumental quartet, will make three appearances on "The Ed Sullivan Show" on the CBS Television Network on successive Sundays (8:00-9:00 PM, PST).

In addition to their previously scheduled visits on Sundays, Feb. 9 and Feb. 16, they will be seen on Sunday, Feb. 23. Their first broadcasts, one from the show's home base in New York and the other from Miami Beach's Deauville Hotel, originate live; their third appearance will be taped in advance.

The Beatles, on their first trip to the United States, arrive in New York on Feb. 7.

"The Ed Sullivan Show" is produced by Bob Precht and directed by Tim Kiley, with music by Ray Bloch.


(CBS press release dated Feb. 5, 1964)

America's most popular single record, the Beatles version of "I Want to Hold Your Hand," will be one of the numbers presented by the popular British vocal and instrumental quartet on "The Ed Sullivan Show" this Sunday, Feb. 9 (8:00-9:00 PM, PST) on the CBS Television Network.

Mitzi McCall and Charlie Brill, comedy team, and Wells and the Four Fays, tumbling act, have been added to the program.

Other guests previously announced are: Tessie O'Shea, featured in the Broadway musical "The Girl Who Came to Supper," presenting a medley of songs she made famous in England; Georgia Brown, co-star of the musical "Oliver"; 37 members of the "Oliver" cast and comedy impressionist Frank Gorshin.

This program marks the first of three successive Sullivan show appearances for the Beatles, Sundays, Feb. 9, Feb. 16 and Feb. 23. The first will be from New York, the second from Miami Beach, and the third will be on tape.

The Beatles arrive in this country from England on Friday, Feb. 7.