When the Beatles Came to My House

By Betty Boyd

beatlesIn 1964, I was 8 years old.  The Beatles had just made their big splash in America, by appearing on the Ed Sullivan Show on February 9, 1964.  I watched the show along with millions of others.


Here’s what was unique about my experience:  My father is a very private, aloof man.  He does not demonstrate (on a regular basis) much affection.  When the Beatles album entitled, “Introducing the Beatles,” came out, he bought a copy.  We had a finished basement in my childhood home in New Jersey.  My father (now a retired Electronics Engineer) built himself an old-style tube phonograph.


My father places the Beatles album on the phonograph and starts dancing to it.  I look at my father with bewildered eyes, and wonder what is going on.  To an 8-year-old, this is a true delight.  I get up and start dancing with my father.  It is one of my happiest memories.   At first, it is only my father and I, but eventually my younger brothers and sisters join in.  My father dances to every song.


He has a smile on his face I will never forget.  For one brief moment in time, I see my father truly happy.  I wanted to enjoy this moment forever.  Finally, the album was finished.  I wanted my father to play it again, so that we could dance some more, but he said that was enough for one evening. He put the album away then turned off the phonograph.


From time to time, I would play this album and try to recreate the moment, but it just was not the same.  I have never seen my father dance like that again.  I did try to get him to dance once more to this album, but he didn’t want to.  I suppose he’d decided it was better to go back into his shell of privacy.


The Beatles did show up at my house, via a phonograph album.  For one brief moment, the dancing and happiness that ensued let me see how much love my father has inside.