New Orleans Advocate

Scoot: Remembering The Beatles City Park Concert

The Beatles admired the R & B that was born in New Orleans

September 16, 2018 - 11:15 pm

On this night, September 16, 54 years ago, an outrageous new group named The Beatles performed at City Park Stadium.  It was a special time for the thousands of young fans that had suddenly been caught up in Beatlemania, but their concert in New Orleans was also very special to The Beatles.  The Beatles met one of their heroes - New Orleans music legend Fats Domino.

The Beatles loved and admired the R & B that was born in New Orleans.  New Orleans R & B was an R & B that was more than soulful - it was sassy with a strong foundation in the blues.  The Beatles, along with other early British Invasion bands took R & B from America - added their new style to it - and introduced young, white America to an R & B sound that had escaped the mainstream white music pop sound.

Young, white Americans growing up in the suburbs first believed The Beatles, not only performed, but wrote songs like, “Twist & Shout,” “Roll Over Beethoven” and “Slow Down,” but these were songs written by popular R & B artists in America that suddenly became top hits on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.

During a fundraiser, Rockin for Richie, benefiting the Davis Phinney Parkinson’s Foundation at Rock N Bowl in New Orleans featuring one of the city's most successful cover bands, The Topcats, I had a chance to talk to three people who knew about The Beatles connection with Fats Domino and the New Orleans music scene.

Vince Vance of Vince Vance & The Valiants, John Blancher - owner of the world famous Rock N Bowl in New Orleans and Rob Schulte - drummer and frontman for The Topcats all jumped at the opportunity to talk about The Beatles’ connection with the New Orleans music scene on the 54th anniversary of The Beatles performing in The Big Easy.

Watch below. 

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