Thursday, October 9, 2014

Beatles in Bradford

So I am going to attempt to do a small version of what I did for the Beatles World tour and North American tour for the 50th anniversary of the 1964 UK Autumn tour.    I say attempt because really I do not have THAT much information or photos about these concerts.   That is partly  because many venues in the UK did not allow photography --- not even from newspapers to be allowed inside of the concert hall.   So there aren't many photographs of the performances.  I know that fan-wise things got extremely out of hand at many of the stops on the tour.  
The tour started on October 9, 1964 at the Gaumont Cinema in Bradford where the Beatles performed two houses.   The traffic was extremely heavy outside of the theater and this made the Beatles arrive late.   They had time to pose for some opening night photos with their special act on the tour, Mary Wells (My Guy).

They also had time to meet with a 5 year old fan

And then they were off  to do the two performances

I cannot find any photograph of the actual concert, but it was written in newspapers that the Beatles were wearing black suits.  The fans in the audience was waving banners and trying to break through the police barriers.   They were throwing all sorts of objects onto the stage, mostly at John because it was his birthday.  One giant teddy bear did make it up on the stage near John.  

One of the journalists, Gordon Sampson, who was covering the show for NME, said this:  "  The fact is you couldn't get a seat that night.  The best the manager could do for me was standing up under an alcove to the side, near the front.   It was where you were put if all the seats had gone.  It was one of the best views in the house, but it was difficult to make out many of the words.  It was a complete madhouse, but it was just exuberance.  It wasn't like the rock n roll tours when they were ripping the seats up.  This was just kids getting excited.  The atmosphere was electric.  It was unprecedented really."

And one fan, Russell Manning, who was just 7 years old was in the front row of the circle with his relatives.  He said, "We had such a great view and you could see everything on the stage.  I remember the whole thing being not quite as manic or as intimidating this time.  We went to see my aunt first and seeing the Beatles on television in her house in an early evening news programme before leaving for the concert.  I twas exciting to watch them on television and know I was going off to see them."

*Quotes and information found in the book Beatlesmania:  the Real story of the Bealtes UK tours by Martin Creasy

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