Good Shepherd for 1965 Beatles Playboy Interview

The Golden Anniversary of the Beatles’ inaugural appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show – go nuts! – is set to culminate in tonight’s Grammys salute.

From the 1964 really big shew:



The hardBeatling staff also recommends this 1965 Playboy interview of the Fab Four conducted by the great Jean Shepherd, a radio legend in his own time who “traveled and lived with” the Beatles for three days “in the midst of a wild, swinging personal-appearance tour they were making throughout the British Isles.”

Shepherd’s introduction is just as interesting as the interview itself.

Representative sample:

It became impossible to tell one town from another, since to us ku-xlargethey were just a succession of dressing rooms and hotel suites. The screams were the same. The music was the same. It all assumed the ritual quality of a fertility rite. Latter-day Druids, the Beatles sat in their dressing room—a plywood Stonehenge—surrounded by sweaty T-shirts, trays of French fries, steak, pots of tea, and the inevitable TV set; while from somewhere off beyond the walls of the theater came the faint, eerie wailing of their worshipers, like the sea or the wind. But the Beatles no more heard it than a New York cop hears traffic . . .

It’s a great read.

Supplemental reading: This Jim Fusilli piece in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal, which asks the musical question, “In February 1964, were the Beatles any good?”

Answer: “Oh yes. And they were going to get better.”


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