Editor´s note: Jere Hester is a journalist and author of “Raising a Beatle Baby.” He is the editor in chief of THE CITY, a New York local news site. The opinions in this commentary are his own.
They broke up 50 years ago. How the Beatles still bring joy in scary times
The Beatles broke up 50 years ago, but their music remains everlastingly relevant.
At Mount Sinai South Nassau on New York’s Long Island, the hospital staff reportedly spins “Here Comes the Sun” on the public address system every time a coronavirus patient is discharged.
Paul McCartney is set to play the upcoming “One World: Together at Home” charity special, joining a bill that includes 18-year-old superfan Billie Eilish, nearly 60 years his junior.
“Yellow Submarine” has gained new resonance as an intergenerational singalong, crooned by neighbors through windows-turned-portholes, socially distant, but inextricably linked.
They may have broken up 50 years ago, on April 10, 1970. But the Beatles still help us come together, especially when we need it most.
So how to explain the enduring grip of a group that invaded the US in 1964 when more than two-thirds of Americans currently alive — had yet to be born?
There are some obvious answers, starting with the music — a fab force that evolved at revolution speed, going from the proto-boy band pop of “I Want to Hold Your Hand” in late 1963 to the psychedelia of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” over a span of 3½ years.
Then there’s the message, embodied in “All You Need is Love.”
And, of course, there’s the humor, born in earthy Liverpool and channeled into family friendly movies from “A Hard Day’s Night” to “Yellow Submarine” that grew on mom and pop, long hair and all.
All true. But it adds up to something much bigger.
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