The band made their world views well-known during their reign.
The world's most successful pop group The Beatles is re-visited in Ron Howard's comprehensive documentary 'The Beatles: Eight Days a Week', released today. They were a band that had a massive impact on the pop culture in the 60s, but also on the political views of the world, in particular - it has emerged - racial segregation.
The Beatles refused to play a segregated concert in Florida
There's no denying the effect the Beatles had on the music industry in the 60s, and indeed the impact they had on the cultural enjoyment of music. With that popularity came responsibility, and they used that put across their libertarian views as often as possible. The Beatles left a mark on the world with their social and political opinions, and even lent a hand to the breaking down of racial segregation in the American south.
'Their first controversial political stance didn't have to do with Vietnam, it had to do with segregation in the South', director Ron Howard explained. 'They found out that one of their concerts in Jacksonville, Florida was meant to be segregated and they refused to play it that way. They even had in their contract they would not play to segregated audiences. It was a ludicrous idea to them.'
Being from Liverpool, England, where racial issues remained but were definitely improving, Howard commented on how they the band had 'no idea' just how big an issue it was when they eventually came to the US. 'But it was clear to them and that's the position they took, and lo and behold, they de-segregated that concert', he continued.
It marked an important moment for them, because this was a band that had so much power over the impressionable youth of the world. 'Often, the world was influencing what the Beatles were going through and the Beatles were influencing the way the world looked at things', Howard said.
'The Beatles: Eight Days a Week' is out in theaters today (September 16th 2016).
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