(According to his biography, Ed Rudy started in show business as “The Milkman” on 1010 WINS in New York City. He later worked at WMGM and WABC in the city. He did both syndicated and live radio and also worked as a newspaper columnist and a record producer. It was his broadcasting for INS Radio News, Radio Pulsebeat News and UPI Radio that put him in contact with The Beatles in 1964. He traveled with The Beatles on their first American tour. He saw the group’s arrival at Kennedy Airport on Feb. 7th, 1964, covered their hotel reception, saw the shows at the Washington Coliseum and Carnegie Hall, went with them to Miami and says he shared a suite with George Harrison at the Deauville Hotel. He later released a series of record albums documenting Beatlemania.including “The American Tour With Ed Rudy” and “Ed Rudy With New U.S. Tour,” which are on CD and available through his website. Rudy is among those interviewed for the film “The Beatles: The Lost Concert,” the upcoming documentary that includes footage of the Beatles’ Washington Coliseum concert with new interviews of Beatles associates and authors. We sent him a few questions by email.)
Q: What was it like remembering Beatlemania after all these years for the new documentary?
Ed Rudy: Beatlemania was the name that was created by the press to describe the fantastic frenzy that accompanied The Beatles arrival in America on February 7th, 1964 at JFK airport in New York City.
Even the staid and hardened members of the writing and broadcasting press were caught up in the excitement of the throngs of young Beatles’ fans who flocked to be somewhere in the vicinity of the “Fab Four”. As the only member of the American press to travel in the Beatle party for the entire first American Tour of The Beatles, it was an unforgettable and life-changing experience.
One of the first albums that we produced was a Tribute production called “Beatlemania.”
Of great importance, the first major American concert was at the Washington, D.C. Coliseum. The outstanding new film, “The Beatles: The Lost Concert” is based upon actual filmed footage, live recordings and interviews relating to this history making performance. It was produced and directed by Steve Cole of England’s Iambic Media and released by Screenvision in the United States.
I was often asked, in radio, television, magazine and newspaper interviews, “As a close observer, what was it that caused the phenomenon of Beatlemania?” I believe that America was in a terrible funk after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on Nov. 22, 1963. The happy arrival of The Beatles in America on Feb. 7, 1964 gave American teenagers and young adults the chance to feel joy and express happiness again. Soon, all of America, and the world joined in the celebration of Beatlemania. It was followed and enhanced by the ensuing peaceful British musical invasion of America. Thesee musical invaders included The Rolling Stones, The Dave Clark 5, Peter & Gordon, Cilla Black, The Kinks and many other English performers who became American stars.
Q: What was it like being in the middle of it?
Ed Rudy: Being in the midst of Beatlemania, while traveling with The Beatles, interviewing and reporting on The Beatles American Tour, was like being in the midst of a very friendly, though sometimes accidentally dangerous, raging mob of American teenagers. We were giving Beatles’ news coverage and exposure over 440 broadcasting outlets all over the United States and Canada. I was very flattered when the Beatles dubbed me, “Ed Rudy, The Fifth Beatle” in broadcasts.
Q: What albums did you release during Beatlemania and are they still available?
Ed Rudy: Early on in the initial Beatlemania frenzy, we released a broadcast documentary which received excellent ratings and myriad requests to purchase copies from te public.
In response we produced The Beatles’ “American Tour with Ed Rudy” interview album which, of course, was given top ratings by the trade publications. The Beatles’ “American Tour with Ed Rudy” became an immediate hit with the record buying public worldwide. In addition, after the second Beatles’ American Tour, we produced for broadcast, now available to consumers also, The Beatles’ “New US Tour with Ed Rudy”. It was very successful! Among the other albums subsequently released were an Open End Beatles’ interview, for broadcasters only. Some deejays inserted their own voices and re-released as their own productions. During the same exciting “British Invasion” period, we produced the Tribute album,”The Great American Tour Live 1965 Beatlemania Concert”, “Ed Rudy With New US Tour Rolling Stones” and “Ed Rudy with New US Tour Dave Clark Five”.
All of the Beatlemania era albums received excellent receptions, acclaim and sales. Only the first two were re-mastered by national Beatle Brunch’s Joe Johnson and re-released as CDs. Only those two are still available, in very limited quantities, on Joe Johnson’s Beatle Brunch website or at WWW.EdRudy.com. All of the original productions have become highly prized and valuable collectors’ prize albums.
Copyright Stan. Please do not reprint in full on other sites without permission. Headlines with links, though, are fine.)
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