Song of the Day: “Roll Over Beethoven”

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While we’re all jumping all over ourselves to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Beatlemania, can we take a moment to appreciate the group’s consummate performance poise? In the above video, taped 50 years ago on February 11, 1964, the Beatles knocked out Chuck Berry’s “Roll Over Beethoven” in less than 90 seconds. And yet the video is 4:32 in length.

Why?

Because the promoters at the Washington Coliseum set up Ringo’s drumkit backwards. Ringo rotates the riser himself. Come on. Once they finally get going, George’s microphone doesn’t work for his lead vocal. Without one hesitation, he moves stage left to John’s mic and keeps the song moving. Love it.

I would have loved to tie this to Boston, but the Beatles didn’t perform in our city till later in the summer. We’ll do a retrospective then. In the meantime, check out all the videos of the Washington, DC show