It Was Almost 50 Years Ago Today. Nothing Like it Before or Since. The Beatles at Dodger Stadium. August 28, 1966.

I have no idea why, sitting inside in the midst of  a typical cold, dreary, rainy vile New York/New Jersey  pre-winter (disgusting weather being the only aspect of life in my wonderful adopted east coast home to which this SoCal beach kid has never adjusted)  I flashed on a night almost 50 years ago at Dodger Stadium.

It was the warm southern California night of August 28, 1966, and my sister and I were in the stands watching The Beatles live in concert. The only video I could find of that event is this raggedy 8mm silent film taken by one of the concert-goers. Their excitement is evident in their inability to keep their hands still.

You will note in the brief film that the letters advertising the sponsoring LA radio station — KRLA — is more prominently visible than the group singing. This was in the day when radio stations were the make or break powerhouses that determined the fate of rock and roll acts.

If you ask my sister, I think she would agree that — while it was virtually impossible to hear the music — the excitement almost certainly represented the most visceral and intense experience we had had up to that point in our lives. I still have the program and ticket stub.

My sister may not remember this (I only did moments ago) but  our beyond-wonderful Mom surprised us with the tickets at least partially as a reward for a pretty difficult tonsillectomy I had undergone earlier that summer.

I’ll never, ever forget it.

This was the set-list.

Now, to share what a first-rate live Beatles concert was like in a non-stadium venue, look at this excerpt from a Paris concert, my fave of many that can now be found on YouTube.

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Sheila (Recorded Live in 1962 by The Beatles)

Sweet little Sheila

You’ll know her if you see her

Blue eyes and a crazy smile

 

Her cheeks are rosy

She loves and she shows me

Hey this little girl is fine.

 

Never knew a girl like

a little Sheila

Her very name drives me insane

 

Sweet little girl

that’s my pretty Sheila

Hey, this little girl is mine.

 

Me and Sheila go for a ride

I’m telling you I’m

feeling funny inside:

 

Then little Sheila

whispers in my ear

I’m telling you girl

I love you Sheila dear

 

Sheila says she loves me

She says she never leaves me

True love could never die

I’ll be really happy

 

just me and her together

 

True love could never die.

I’ll be really happy

 

just me and her together

 

Hey

this little girl is fine

 

Hey

this little girl is fine . . .

Music #2: Two Favorites by the Boys from Liverpool

After a day filled with serious news and other gravitas, I’m almost always looking to come down with music.  And I never have even the slightest idea where I will end up. Ave Maria is just as likely as Cream. Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto has as good a chance as Skeeter Davis.

Well here is where I went tonight. These are two of my favorite songs by the boys, “You Can’t Do That” and “It Won’t Be Long.” 

And yes, I did see them in concert in the summer of 1965, thanks my Mom, who surprized my sister and I with tickets when I got out of the hospital after having my tonsils removed.

I still have the stub and the program from that night. They played from a stage that covered second base.

.