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The Beatles’ Strange Final Performance

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A week from Sunday will mark the 50th anniversary of Beatlemania in this country. It’s when the Beatles made their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. It began the British invasion of rock acts, and some say the Beatles may have lifted the spirits of a country still mourning the assassination of President Kennedy just a little over two months before.

When you consider that groups like the Rolling Stones have been together for 50 years, it’s probably worth noting that the Beatles lasted only 15. Their last public performance was an impromptu concert on the roof of their Apple recording studio. London police responded to complaints about noise and broke it up. John Lennon closed the performance announcing, “I’d like to say thank you very much on behalf of the group and myself and I hope we passed the audition.”

It happened on this date, January 30, 1969. A year later, Paul McCartney made the formal announcement that the group had officially broken up.

 

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