Skip to main content

The Beatles' All You Need Is Love Live Satellite Broadcast Around The World (Music Video)



In 1967, The Beatles took part in the first ever live international satellite television event, Our World, by performing a new song for the first time to an audience of between 400 million and 700 million people in 31 countries. 

The song was All You Need Is Love, a composition written mostly by John Lennon (according to Paul McCartney), and you can find excellent video of the live satellite debut performance at Sydney Urshan's Facebook page (you don't have to join Facebook to watch it; despite the fact that the page suggests you can embed the video, I haven't been able to).


It is hard to communicate just how extraordinary was the experience of watching the Beatles perform this song live "all over the globe."

Aside from capturing the world's attention with a truly newsworthy event, in 1967 the Beatles were at the height of their Indian meditation/LSD-influenced/Summer of Love "anti-establishment" rebelliousness, and the joy and freedom and sense of power they communicated to the world's youth cannot be overstated. 

They literally and figuratively turned the world from black and white into color, as they do in this video - although ironically it was recorded in black and white and then carefully digitally colorized, using photographs of the period as color guides. 




Although phenomenally popular around the world, and unarguably musical geniuses, the Beatles were not universally loved. 

They were seen as a threat by some, there had been Beatles record-smashing and burning events in America (perhaps slightly jealous of the British band's global influence?) following John Lennon's assertion that the Beatles meant more to the youth of Britain than Jesus Christ, and their revolutionary (in terms of its music, certainly) album, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band - again with a seemingly powerful influence of drugs and Indian mysticism - had just been released on June 1 1967, and immediately banned by the BBC in Britain for its drug references. 

The satellite performance of All You Need Is Love took place - in Britain, on BBC TV, ironically - just 25 days later, on June 25 1967. This was against a background of the Vietnam War, Civil Rights and many other issues which the song's message of love (love and peace were revolutionary tools, in the hands of John Lennon) undoubtedly addressed.




The initiator of the Our World international satellite production (a two and a half hour show, with segments from nineteen nations, including contributions from artist Pablo Picasso and opera singer Maria Callas - but with politicians deliberately excluded) was BBC producer, Aubrey Singer. 

As Wikipedia reports, the project then passed to the European Broadcasting Union, but the master control room for the satellite broadcast remained at the BBC in London. 




Satellites were still fairly new - the Russians had launched the first successful satellite, Sputnik 1, just ten years before in 1957, adding enormous fuel to the Space Race between the USA and USSR. 

Apollo 11 wouldn't land on the moon until two years after the All You Need Is Love broadcast, and satellites were still largely the province of science fiction and spy movies. 






So the once mop-topped Fab Four held the world in sway for the first ever satellite broadcast of its like, chewing gum for nerves as they performed, with a new song that opens with the intro to the French national anthem, La Marseillaise, and continues with "an assymetric time signature and complex changes" (Wikipedia). 

The song, and the broadcast, also feature a group of assembled Beatles friends and celebrities, including Mick Jagger (who can be seen at 3:06 in the video), Marianne Faithful, Eric Clapton, Keith Moon and Graham Nash. 

Together they join in the song's closing chorus (a 6/4 beat, compared to the rest of the song's 4/4):

"Love is all you need, Love is all you need..."

Yes. 








Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The High Tower Apartments and The Long Goodbye

This beautiful apartment complex in Los Angeles is called the Hightower or High Tower Complex (the High Tower name refers to the central elevator, I believe), and was designed in 1935-1936 by architect Carl Kay - and made famous in 1973 by my favorite film, Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye (see Why I Love Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye).


Although Altman used the building as Philip Marlowe's apartment in his somewhat post-modern Long Goodbye (the film plays with references to Old Hollywood and opens and closes with the song, Hooray For Hollywood), the building has another direct connection to Raymond Chandler.


It was apparently the inspiration for Chandler in his book, The High Window (the first Chandler novel I ever read), in which Chandler describes the residence of Philip Marlowe as being on the cliffs above High Tower Drive in a building with a fancy elevator tower. (Thanks to the Society of Architectural Historians Southern California Chapter webpage for that.) 


This ph…

From Dawn to Sunset on the Beach - Pelicans, Whales and Memories of my Father

This post about my father and the ocean is very important to me right now. It was written when we first moved to Santa Cruz, which we insisted on calling Aldabra because it is so magical...
From Dawn to Sunset on the Beach - Pelicans, Whales and Memories of my Father
Living and writing by the ocean - in a spot we like to call Aldabra (which in reality is a remote and very beautiful atoll in the Indian Ocean) - the beach figures large in my thoughts and daily routine.

Usually I wake early, and on occasion I walk at dawn through the waves, past the occasional fisherperson, enjoying the darkness slowly transforming into light, the spray of the breakers, the pull of the tide around my feet, the constant barking of the sea lions, the damp of the ocean mist - and the sight of the sun breaking over the horizon to the east.






Recently, a few days before what would have been his birthday, I thought of my father as I trod the beach at dawn. He came from a tiny Scottish fishing village, Rosehearty, se…

Andrew Hale and Sade

On Thursday evening, we saw our longtime friend Andrew Hale perform with Sade at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, in one of the most beautifully conceived and produced concert performances I have ever seen.

Sade is a rare musician, in that she and the band only write, record and tour every eight to ten years, so that in a very real sense you can measure your life by her.

The band's music is always fresh and always newly conceived - for their previous album, Lovers Rock, they stripped everything down musically to a minimalist sound and banished the saxophone that had been so much a part of Sade's heavily soul- and jazz-influenced style.


The latest album, Soldier of Love, released in 2010, is one of the most tender, moving collections of songs yet, from the astonishingly beautiful Morning Bird, which features exquisite keyboards from Andrew, to the soulful, retro, return-of-the-sax melodies of In Another Time, and the deeply touching, reggae-influenced charm of Babyfather - a partic…