A Brief History
February 7, 2014 marked the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the “British Invasion,” a period in which British rock and roll musicians flooded the United States, starting with the greatest of them all, The Beatles.
Arriving to throngs of adoring, screaming and crying girls and young women, the “Fab Four” made their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show 2 days later. “Beatlemania” was born and America officially conquered! From 1964 to 1970, the “mop tops” ruled the air waves and record stores like no other group before or since. Even songs about The Beatles were played on the radio. (If that is not a clue as to how big they were.)
Following the Beatles to America were numerous other British groups and performers, including many favorites of the History and Headlines staff, such as: The Rolling Stones; The Who; The Animals; The Kinks; Dusty Springfield; Petula Clark; Manfred Mann; Chad and Jeremy; and Tom Jones.
Of course, many other Brits worthy of mention also hit it big in the US of A, far to many to list, but not to be forgotten are: The Dave Clark Five; Gerry and Pacemakers; Herman’s Hermits; Them (Van Morrison); the Yard birds (with Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton); The Troggs; and Donovan. These are just a few of the many wonderful artists that made up the friendly “invasion.”
Question for students (and subscribers): Please feel free to tell us your memories of the British Invasion or your favorite artists or songs from that era in the comments section below this article.
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For more information, please read…
Miles, Barry. The British Invasion: The Music, the Times, the Era. Sterling, 2009.