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The Beatles played here, 49 years ago

Monday - 2/11/2013, 12:32pm  ET

Neal Augenstein,

WASHINGTON -- Feb. 11 agreed with The Beatles.

Fifty years ago today, Feb. 11, 1963, John, Paul, George and Ringo recorded the entire "Please Please Me" album at EMI Studios on Abbey Road.

Fourteen songs, in approximately 10 hours, at a cost of about 400, according to producer George Martin.

Exactly one year later, on Feb. 11, 1964, The Beatles played their first U.S. concert at the Washington Coliseum.

The Beatles took the train from New York City to Washington's Union Station during a snow storm.

On the platform, after getting off the train, in the midst of their first whirlwind tour of America, Ringo joked "It's great to be here in New York."

In the Coliseum on Third St. NE, blocks from Union Station, about 8,000 people paid $2, $3, or $4 per ticket for the 35-minute show.

Compared with today's rock concert technology, the show was amateurish.

At the request of concert promoters, The Beatles periodically moved their equipment and sang toward different portions of the audience.

Film of the show, shot by documentary filmmakers David and Albert Maysles, shows Ringo trying to rotate the drum riser without luck, getting assistance from a bystander.

The 35-minute set contained 12 songs.

After the show, The Beatles rushed back to the Shoreham hotel, before attending a late-night reception at the British Embassy.

The next morning, the band boarded a train back to New York, for two performances at Carnegie Hall.

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