The Beatles enter the mainstream U.S charts for the first time in 1964 with “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”

The Hot 100 chart attack kicked off the Beatlemania in the U.S

The Beatles enter the mainstream U.S charts for the first time in 1964 with “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”

“I Want To Hold Your Hand” was Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, and recorded in October 1963, it was the first Beatles record to be made using four-track equipment. In the United Kingdom, the song would have gone straight to the top of the British record charts on its day of release which was the 29 November 1963, had it not been blocked by the group’s first million seller “She Loves You”, their previous UK single then rising again on the charts due to the increasing band’s popularity. Taking two weeks to dislodge its predecessor, “I Want to Hold Your Hand” stayed at number 1 for five weeks and remained in the UK top 50 for 21 weeks in total. In the U.S, this was the first song by The Beatles to enter the mainstream music charts. On 18 January 1964, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” entered the Billboard Hot 100 at number 45 and kicked off the British invasion of the American music industry. By February 1st it had topped the Hot 100, and stayed there for seven weeks before being replaced by “She Loves You”. It remained on the Billboard chart for 15 weeks. “I Want to Hold Your Hand” became the Beatles’ best-selling single worldwide and a symbol of the beginning of the planetary Beatlemania. In Germany, along with “She Loves You” (“Sie liebt dich”), “I Want to Hold Your Hand” was one of two Beatles songs to be recorded in German entitled “Komm, gib mir deine Hand”. This was a common practice on the European music industry back in the early to mid 1960’s, on this case, it happened due to Odeon, the German arm of EMI (the parent company of the Beatles’ record label, Parlophone) being convinced that the Beatles’ records would not sell in Germany unless they were sung in German. The band detested the idea and even tried to boycott the German recording sessions, but eventually ended up doing it. Like so many songs back then, those versions are now regarded as a cultural curiosity from a by-gone era at best, and the English versions are much better known in Germany today. Starting at the song’s final week at number 1 on the American charts, the Beatles have the all-time record of seven number 1 songs in a one-year period. In order, these were “I Want to Hold Your Hand”, “She Loves You”, “Can’t Buy Me Love”, “Love Me Do”, “A Hard Day’s Night”, “I Feel Fine” and “Eight Days a Week”.

Look back at The Beatles performing “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” on The Ed Sullivan Show in February, 1964

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