Billy Joel Says The Beatles Saved Depressed Americans After Kennedy’s Death
Billy Joel recently appeared as a guest on CNN’s Extraordinary With Fareed Zakaria and stated that The Beatles took US citizens out of depression after the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
John F. Kennedy, the 35th president of the US, was assassinated on November 22, 1963, by Lee Harvey Oswald, a former US Marine. The killing of the popular president has remained the subject of widespread speculation in the country. It has been the center of many conspiracy theories. His death profoundly impacted US citizens and led to a national trauma.
After the assassination, another historical event happened with the Beatles’ first TV appearance in the US. In February 1964, the band showed up on The Ed Sullivan Show for several performances. It would lead to the eruption of Beatlemania in the US in a short time. The group’s new sound and look gave the US citizens a much-needed lift after a long grieving process.
The connection between the two notable incidents was also apparent to Billy Joel. During his recent interview, the singer said almost all the American people were devastated over the assassination of Kennedy as he represented youth and the future. For Joel, the Beatles came with what the country needed at the time. They gave the vitality that the country lost after the tragic incident and took the country out of depression. Eventually, Americans found something of themselves in the Beatles.
The influence of the Beatles in the US after the Kennedy assassination in Billy Joel’s words:
“I’m part of the world also, aside from being a musician. I am affected by events. If you think about it, right before the Beatles hit, which was on The Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964, what major event happened prior to that? The assassination of John F. Kennedy, who was a young, vital, vigorous man, the President who represented youth and the future. He was taken away from us.
The country had the blues. Big time, everybody was depressed over the Kennedy assassination, and it lasted for a long time. Who took us out of that depression? The Beatles. They represented youth; they represented the future. They represented vitality. Something new, something which was of us, of our age group, the baby boomers. They took off like superstars.”
You can watch the full interview below.