Record Sales & Beatles Triva
During the week of April 4, 1964 The Beatles occupied
the first five slots of the Billboard Hot 100,
#1 - "Can't Buy Me Love," #2 - "Twist
and Shout," #3 - "She Loves You,"
#4 - "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and
#5 - "Please Please Me," the only group
in rock and roll history to achieve this feat.
In 1964 the Beatles had the never-matched total
of 15 American million-selling records (9 singles
and 6 LPs), representing US sales of over 25 million
in 1964 alone.
"I Want To Hold Your Hand" sold nearly
5 million records in the US by 1968, making it
the best selling single of the 1960s (from a Capitol
Records Press release, September 9, 1968).
When "Can’t Buy Me Love" was released
in the US on March 16, 1964 it sold 940,225 copies
on the first day, shattering all previous sales
records. The single went on to sell over 3 million
by the end of the year (Spizer, Bruce, 2000: The
Beatles’ Story on Capitol Records, Part
One: Beatlemania & The Singles, p. 36).
The motion picture soundtrack "A Hard Day’s
Night" sold 1 million copies in the first
four days of its US release making it one of the
fastest selling LPs of the 1960s (Billboard article,
July 11, 1964).
By August 1964 the Beatles had sold approximately
80 million records globally (Variety 235, August
By February 1965 their global sales had moved
beyond 100 million records (Variety 237, February
Rubber Soul sold 1.2 million copies in the US
during the first 9 days of its release (Billboard
article, January 1, 1966).
By August 1966 the Beatles had sold 150 million
records worldwide (Variety 243, August 3, 1966).
By May 1967 the Beatles’ global gross stood
at $98 million (Variety 246, May 19, 1967).
The "Hey Jude" single had sold over
3 million times in America in its first 2 months
of release and 3.7 million by mid-January 1969.
It eventually sold over 4 million copies and was
the fourth best-selling single of the 1960s (Spizer,
Bruce, 2003: The Beatles on Apple Records, p.
Although it carried a list price of $11.79 their
double album The Beatles sold 1.1 million units
during its first two weeks on sale, a record for
a double-set at the time (Spizer, Bruce, 2003:
The Beatles on Apple Records, p. 102).
"Abbey Road" sold over 3 million copies
in the US in a little over a month, making it
one of the best-selling LPs of the 1960s despite
having been on sale for only the last three months
of the decade (Spizer, Bruce, 2003: The Beatles
on Apple Records, p. 164).
According to the Guinness Book of Records the
Beatles had topped worldwide sales of 300 million
units by 1969.
The Let It Be LP reportedly shipped 3.2 million
copies in 13 days representing a gross retail
value of nearly $26 million (Billboard article,
June 6, 1970).
By October 1972 the Beatles’ worldwide sales
total stood at 545 million units, a world record
(Billboard 84, October 21, 1972).
"Dear Prudence" was written by John
Lennon while the Beatles were in India visiting
the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. They had brought along
an entourage of sorts including singer/songwriter
Donovan, Mike Love of the Beach Boys, Mia Farrow
and her sister Prudence, who was having a difficult
stay. Prudence wouldn't come out of her hut so
John played his guitar and serenaded her with
the song lyrics, Dear Prudence... won't you come
out to play?
The song "Octopus's Garden" was composed
by Starr during one of his dido strikes. Bored
by recording, he went to sea. When he returned
the others enthusiastically welcomed him and his
George Harrison co-operated with Eric Idle and
Neil Innes in writing and filming (for television)
the fictitious story of the Rutles, a "Rutlandbeat"
group affectionately satirising the Beatles. Innes
parodied particular Beatles songs with lyrics
and titles (e.g. "Ouch!") only marginally
less believable than those of the Fab Four.
Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney (and his wife Linda),
and George Harrison all guest starred on The Simpsons
although not at the same time.
- I Want to Hold Your Hand
1965 songs -Help!,
Yesterday, Drive My Car, Norwegian Wood (This
Bird Has Flown), Nowhere Man, In My Life
1966 songs -Taxman,
Eleanor Rigby, I'm Only Sleeping, Got to Get You
Into My Life
1967 songs -Sgt.
Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Lucy in the
Sky with Diamonds, When I'm Sixty-Four, A Day
in the Life, Magical Mystery Tour, I Am the Walrus,
Strawberry Fields Forever, Penny Lane
1968 songs -Blackbird,
Mother Nature's Son, Helter Skelter, Revolution
1969 songs - Come
Together, Something, Here Comes the Sun, She Came
in Through the Bathroom Window