Here’s what happened.
The concert at New York’s Shea Stadium remains one of the greatest events in Beatles lore. However, Atlanta was also a stop on that historic tour. The only live performance ever by the Beatles in Atlanta took place on August 18, 1965.
Tony Taylor and Paul Drew of WQXI-AM , also known as “Quixie in Dixie,” were the show emcees. The concert bill also featured the late King Curtis (best known for his instrumental hit, “Soul Serenade”) and Brenda Holloway (whose biggest Motown hit was “Every Little Bit Hurts.”)
Here’s why it mattered then.
Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium was only a few months new when the Fab Four performed their hit-filled set there. Rock promoters had begun to prefer sports stadiums to concert halls because more tickets could be sold. Such venues could be successful as long as there were plenty of police officers and medical stations available to handle swooning fans.
Anticipating even more tickets sales, concert promoters began to use sports stadiums and other large, open spaces for weekend rock festivals. This approach reached its apex on August 18, 1969, when Jimi Hendrix closed out “3 Days of Peace and Music” at a rain-soaked outdoor festival in White Lake, New York, about 40 miles southwest of Woodstock. The Beatles had been invited to appear but declined.
Here’s why it matters now.
As solo performers the Beatles continued to have an impact on music, and one of them even improved the rock festival model. The Concert for Bangladesh, which was co-organized by George Harrison, may have helped to inspire large charity music events such as Live Aid and Farm Aid.
Many other historic events occurred at Fulton County Stadium before it was demolished in 1997. A few examples are Hank Aaron’s record-breaking home run in 1974, a World Series championship for the Atlanta Braves in 1995 (as well as three other Series appearances), and the baseball tournaments of the Summer Olympic Games in 1996.
Here’s the latest update . . .
Only two of the original Beatles are still alive. Richard Starkey (Ringo Starr) is not one of them. Two days after Randolph Peter (Pete) Best had been fired as drummer, Ringo played with his new band mates at a concert in Port Sunlight, England—on August 18, 1962.
On July 7, 2010, Ringo celebrated his 70th birthday with a concert at Radio City Music Hall in New York City featuring his group, the All-Starr Band. The show featured a surprise appearance by Paul McCartney, who came onstage to jam with the band.
. . . And here’s an interesting fact!
Although the site of Fulton County Stadium is now a parking lot for Turner Field, the landing spot of Hank Aaron’s 715th home run is marked by a monument. The stadium was imploded on August 2, 1997. Only a few days later another Atlanta sports venue was also demolished. The land where the Omni Coliseum once stood is now occupied by Phillips Arena and CNN Center.