Pretty much everyone either remembers or has heard about The Beatles’ remarkable American television debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. What many people forget is that The Beach Boys were running a close second on the overall radio charts, and were arguably just as influential as the Fab Four on the evolution of rock. The two bands were in something of a friendly creative competition during the 60s—Paul McCartney has even admitted that Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was created in answer to The Beach Boys’ groundbreaking Pet Sounds.
Today, Sept. 24, 2014, marks fifty years to the day that The Beach Boys had their own debut on The Ed Sullivan Show, with a performance of “I Get Around.”
First released as a single in May 1964 (and later on the album All Summer Long), “I Get Around” was recorded in two sessions, during the first of which Brian Wilson fired his father as manager for the group. The song became The Beach Boys’ first number-one hit in the U.S., and in the eyes of many today represents the pinnacle of their early beach culture days before the quintet began exploring new musical territory.
Below is a clip of “I Get Around” from The Beach Boys’ performance on The Ed Sullivan Show. Enjoy!