They screamed for Sinatra, they screamed for Elvis. But the scream that erupted when the Beatles came to America and went on The Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964 was like no scream before it, heralding the dawn of the youth culture frenzy we think of as the 60s.
In Justin Bieber’s Believe, a documentary that came out this winter, footage of the Beatles and their Beatlemaniacs is intercut with the teen singer’s fans, known as Beliebers.
Is the comparison fair? Bieber and the Beatles (in their early days) share an interest in love as a subject, and say “baby” a lot. Bieber and the early Beatles alike earned the scorn of music critics. (Newsweek called the Beatles' Ed Sullivan performance “a near-disaster ... guitars and drums slamming out a merciless beat.”)
We talked with Beliebers who — on a scale of 1 to 10 — love Justin “infinite times an infinite amount of infinity,” and with Beatlemaniacs who swear loyalty to the end: “When I’m laid out in that little old coffin,” says one fan, “I'm going to have Beatles music playing in the background. No hymns, just Beatles. Especially Revolver.”
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All My LovingArtist: The BeatlesLabel: Universal Music
BabyArtist: Justin BieberAlbum: My World 2.0Label: Island
Ask Me WhyArtist: The BeatlesAlbum: Please Please MeLabel: EMI
She Loves YouArtist: The BeatlesLabel: Universal Music
BoyfriendArtist: Justin BieberAlbum: BelieveLabel: Island Records
She Said She SaidArtist: The BeatlesAlbum: RevolverLabel: Capitol