The Beatles: The Night That Changed America- A Grammy Salute (Friday, May 2, ITV1, 10:35pm)
On February 9, 1964, a then record-breaking 74 million viewers tuned into The Ed Sullivan Show to watch the first US TV appearance by the Beatles. Despite the producers helpfully supplying a caption informing fans that John Lennon was already spoken for, it fuelled the country’s growing Beatlemania and sparked the so-called ‘British Invasion” of the US charts.
In fact, it was such a momentous night in US music and television history that some of the biggest names in pop came together to mark its 50th anniversary with this special. Maroon 5, Katy Perry, Ed Sheeran, Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys and John Legend, are among those paying tribute, while the Eurythmics got back together especially for the occasion.
But the biggest reunion of all is that of Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, who team up for a performance of Hey Jude and With a Little Help From My Friends.
And if you’re still sceptical about whether the TV show really did change America, presenters including Johnny Depp and Sean Penn will be putting it in context for you.
Look Out For: McCartney and Starr returning.