When I was about 15, I was lucky enough to see the Beatles in concert at Cincinnati Gardens during their first tour of the U.S. Never mind that this was a terrible venue for musical events; you couldn't hear the music anyway for the screaming that accompanied all of their early concerts. I was one of those screamers; a fan then and still a fan today. You can find me every Sunday morning having Breakfast with the Beatles, a radio program on Chicago's WXRT-FM hosted by Terri Hemmert.
So naturally, we opted for the In the Footsteps of the Beatles tour when we landed in Liverpool. There is a wonderful museum to visit, The Beatles Story, which starts at the very beginning, long before the group came together. It is jam packed with audio and video clips, musical instruments, items of clothing, and other ephemera tracing the amazing journey of the fab four from poor scruffy lads to larger than life musicians. After the museum, we boarded a bus and went to see first hand the childhood homes of John, George and Paul; Ringo's home, alas, is in a part of town than has been blocked off for redevelopment and is no longer accessible. We went to Penny Lane, the roundabout with the bank and the barber shop, and stopped at the gate to Strawberry Fields, a former orphanage. All of these once ordinary places, now forever famous in songs we'll never forget. It was a fantastic day.
Next weekend, October 9, would have been John Lennon's 70th birthday, and I know I've gotten older as well, but every time I hear a Beatles song, I become 16 or 20 again. Long live the power of music!