The Beatles Played to 11,000 Empty Seats at a Show on Their Final Tour

After The Beatles arrived in America with “I Want to Hold Your Hand” at No. 1 and screaming fans everywhere, “Beatlemania” officially kicked into gear. In the following years, the band would rack up one chart-topping hit after another (including six in 1964) and dominate the music scene.

When the band played to 56,000 fans at Shea Stadium in August ’65, it might have been the peak of Beatlemania. By the following year, they were singing about the “Nowhere Man” inside them and some “Day Tripper” who turned up at their flat. They had more on their mind than holding hands.

And in ’66 the Fab Four quit touring for good. After an ugly experience in the Philippines and the realization that their live shows sounded terrible, the band decided to pack it in following its last hurrah in San Francisco that August.

But that final tour was a revelation for reasons other than sound quality. At several stops along the way, The Beatles played to thousands of empty seats. And at Shea, triumphant site of their famous ’65 show, the Fab Four faced the reality of 11,000 unsold tickets.

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