50th Anniversary Beatles Tribute Coming To CBS In February
50 years after the Beatles' historic appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, CBS will present The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute To The Beatles. The two-hour special is set to tape on January 27th -- the day after the 56th Annual Grammy Awards -- and will be broadcast in HDTV and 5.1 surround sound on Sunday, February 9th, 2014 -- exactly 50 years to the day, date, and time of the "Fab Four's" live U.S. debut performance. The Beatles' Ed Sullivan Show debut was watched by over 73 million people and marked the band's first of three consecutive weekly performances on the CBS variety show.
According the event's press release, the show "will feature today's top artists covering songs performed by the Fab Four that momentous evening in 1964 and Beatles songs through the years, and will include footage from that landmark Sunday evening, as well as other archival material. In addition, various presenters will help highlight and contextualize the musical, cultural and historical impact of the group and this legendary performance."
Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Alice Cooper, who in less than a decade would be raising hell on L.A.'s Sunset Strip with both John Lennon and Ringo Starr, recalled the excitement that every teenager felt on February 9th, 1964 watching the Beatles change all the rules and break all the boundaries during their first Ed Sullivan Show appearance on February 9th, 1964: "I was, like everybody else, sitting there with my whole family, gleefully watching my parents' disgust at the Beatles. They just hated the Beatles, till they saw the (Rolling) Stones -- then all of a sudden, the Beatles were fine (laughs). I don't think any of us realized how influential that was going to be to, y'know, the entire world -- it was gonna change everything."