My son Bailey bought us tickets to see The Beatles rooftop concert in the IMAX theater on Friday night. If you get a chance to do this…do it. It sounds like you are there listening live. It lasts around 1:30 minutes. They added a brief Beatles history and a little followup after the performance.
They played on the freezing rooftop of Apple Records on January 6, 1969. It was the first time they played in front of an audience since August 29, 1966. You could see the breath of people on the roof and in the street. It is not easy playing in cold weather. Your fingers freeze and you cannot feel the strings. It’s a wonder their guitars didn’t go out of tune more.
It was clear that the Beatles could have toured like their peers The Stones, Led Zeppelin, and The Who and sounded every bit as good. They were very raw and earthy sounding because of the type of songs they were writing at the time. Songs that could be played live, not the Sgt Peppers experimental music. The songs linked to the style of the White Album.
They had just written these songs and rehearsed them that month so the songs were new to them except One After 909. John and Paul wrote that one when they were teenagers. It’s hard to believe how young they were at the time. None of them were thirty but they had packed a lot of living in their years being The Beatles.
John Lennon was normally a rhythm guitar player but he plays the lead on Get Back and you can tell he enjoyed stepping up and doing that. They would complete one more album after this…and that was Abbey Road. That is called going out on top.
To see them in an IMAX theater was amazing. It looked like it was recorded yesterday…not 53 years ago. I’ve seen the Get Back documentary twice but it’s nothing like seeing the concert at a theater…it changes the dynamics of it…plus IMAX just makes it that much better.
It would have been interesting to see them play in a more controlled enviroment but I’m glad we got this. Right after John Lennon said ” I’d like to say thank you on behalf of the group and ourselves, and I hope we pass the audition.”…someone in the theater shouted out…”You most certainly did John”
That about sums it up.