Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Fans remember Shea '66

Two days after my sixteenth birthday I saw The Beatles perform at Shea Stadium.  I was a veteran of the 1965 Beatles concert at Shea, but that experience, exciting as it was, paled in comparison to their 1966 performance.  I had field-level seats and could actually wee them without the aid of binoculars.  There were about 5,000 fewer people in attendance than in 1965.  Also, there were more male fans at Shea in 1966.  These factors resulted in less noise.  Although the conditions were still less than ideal, I could hear The Beatles sing and play.
That is my fondest memory of the 1966 concert, being able to see and hear them, unlike a year earlier as I sat in the upper deck, trying to figure out what song they were singing, or if they were playing anything at all.  Three decades have passed since August 23, 1966, but I can still recall watching and listening in amazement as the Beatles did “Nowhere Man,” “If I needed someone”, and “Day Tripper,” introducing the latter as their “Number One hit form 1965.”
At times, I did use my handy pair of opera glasses and observed each Beatle individually.  At one point, I thought John Lennon was waving at me, only to realize he was acknowledging a poster behind me that congratulated the Lennons (John and Cynthia) on their fourth wedding anniversary.  Although we now know The Beatles were sick and tired of performing live, the smiles on their faces indicated they were having fun that evening.  I know I did!

I’m a veteran of both Shea concerts:  Aug 15, 1965 and August 23, 1966.  The second concert happened to be on John and Cynthia’s anniversary, so I decided to make a banner for them and hang it at the concert.  Imagine my dad’s reaction when the paint leaked through the sheet, and the message, “Happy 4th Anniversary, John and Cynthia” was now on the driveway!
Both concerts were a thrill for me, as I was a major fan (still am).  The second time (’66) I could actually hear some of the music.  I was so pleased that I got the braces off my teeth the day before the ’66 concert in case Paul looked my way.  I was miles from the man, but when he did glance my way, I happily flashed him my new found teeth.

I saw them in 1966 in Shea Stadium with a fellow Nebraska friend.  We were in seventh heaven!  Here we were, seventeen year old Beatlemaniacs, getting to experience our heroes.  It was sheer pandemonium.  Everyone was in ecstasy.  I remember a young man two rows in front of us screaming, “George, I love you, George.”  We thought that was pretty funny.  The police formed several rows around the stage and people still got through.  It was something Ill never forget.
--John R.

 I was stationed at MacGuire AFB and the service club got us tickets to the concert....We sat in left field....The Ronettes and the Cyrkle also performed....It was difficult hearing them because of all the noise....What a wonderful time especially the trick they performed at the end of the concert where they sent an armored truck out as a decoy and after everyone chased it out the came by us in a station wagon and waved to us....we picked up MANY 8X10 glossy's in the parking lot that had been dropped during the mass exit. – Wayne

 My sister and I were at this show. My dad drove us all the way to NY from WVa to see it. I saved my ticket stub for the longest time, then my mother threw it out when I went to college. My sister and I were debating whether we would scream when they came out, but you really just couldn't help it! Still one of the highlights of my life. -  Amy

No comments:

Post a Comment