The Beatles: Bigger than Jesus 41 years running
March 4, 2007 6:56 AM Subscribe
The Beatles are Bigger than Jesus.
It was 41 years ago today, that the Evening Standard published a Maureen Cleave interview
with John Lennon, in which he declared the Beatles “more popular than Jesus”
. Later in July, DATEbook, an American teen mag, printed only the Jesus statement and nothing else from the interview. The firestorm of reaction in the US was immediate. Radio stations nationwide, but particularly in the South and in the Midwest, banned the playing of Beatles records [Real Audio]
. Death threats against all of the Fab Four poured in. In Cleveland, a preacher threatened to excommunicate any member of his congregation who listened to the Beatles, and in the South, the Ku Klux Klan burned the Beatles in effigy and nailed Beatles albums to burning crosses. On August 11, Lennon held a press conference in Chicago, where he apologized, sort of [Real Audio]
. The press conference was on the eve of the Beatles’ last tour of their career. Many say this epsiode, as well as the riots that accompanied their tour of the Philippines (also in July), as well as the accumulated stress of being on top of the world for nearly four years at that point, precipitated the beginning of the end
of the Beatles.
Is it true though? Are the Beatles bigger than Jesus? Though this was unanswerable in 1966, thanks to the magic of the web, we do know the answer today: according to Google, the answer is no
. Still, other views persist
posted by psmealey (71 comments total)
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