Following the previous day’s concerts in Copenhagen, Denmark, The Beatles flew to Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, Netherlands, arriving at 1pm.
Next day, Holland: huge motor-cycle escort through Amsterdam, police and civil guard, clubs, helmets and leathered bodies, burly and bludgeoning. From the hotel we went to a TV centre for rehearsals, interviews and a TV show.
Fifty Years Adrift
At the airport they were given flowers and traditional Dutch hats. They gave a press conference before departing for the town of Hillegom near Haarlem, 26 miles outside Amsterdam, where they were booked to record a television appearance.
They arrived at Hillegom’s Café-Restaurant Treslong, situated at Vosselaan 15, at around 4pm. From 5.30pm they rehearsed for their appearance on VARA-TV, and recording began at 8pm.
In the first part of the programme they answered questions from the 150-strong audience. The Beatles were seated in the bar with Berend Boudewijn, who translated their answers and relayed them to Herman Stok, who was seated with the audience.
For the second part they mimed to the studio versions of ‘Twist And Shout’, ‘All My Loving’, ‘Roll Over Beethoven’, ‘Long Tall Sally’, ‘She Loves You’, and ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’. As their microphones were left on, the group occasionally sang along to the songs.
During ‘Long Tall Sally’, members of the audience, mostly male, got onto the stage to dance with the group. Their numbers increased during ‘She Loves You’, and by ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’ the group was surrounded by members of the public. Mal Evans, Neil Aspinall and Derek Taylor tried in vain to clear the stage, but eventually The Beatles were forced to leave instead.
As the group had been miming, the music carried on playing without them. Only Jimmie Nicol – Ringo Starr’s temporary stand-in due to illness – remained on stage, resolutely continuing without the others.
The performance was combined with footage from The Beatles’ visit to Amsterdam the following day, and screened as The Beatles In Nederland on the Nederland 1 channel on Monday 8 June 1964 at 8.30pm.
After their appearance in Hillegom, The Beatles visited De Wallen, Amsterdam’s infamous red-light district.
When we hit town, we hit it. We’re not pissing about. There’s photographs of me crawling about in Amsterdam on me knees, coming out of whorehouses and things like that. And people saying [cheerily], “Good morning, John.” The police escorting me to the places because they never wanted a big scandal, you see. I don’t really want to talk about it, ’cause it hurt Yoko. And it’s not fair. But suffice to say, just put it like, “They were Satyricon on tour,” and that’s it. ’cause I don’t want to hurt the other people’s girls either, it’s just not fair.
The Beatles stayed the night in Amsterdam’s Doelen Hotel, on Nieuwe Doelenstraat 24.
Also on this day...
- 2020: Paul McCartney voices support for Black Lives Matter protests
- 2015: Paul McCartney live: Nouveau Stade Vélodrome, Marseille, France
- 2007: US album release: Memory Almost Full by Paul McCartney
- 1989: UK album release: Flowers In The Dirt by Paul McCartney
- 1981: UK album release: Somewhere In England by George Harrison
- 1968: Recording: Don’t Pass Me By
- 1963: Live: Odeon Cinema, Leeds
- 1962: Travel: Liverpool to London
- 1961: Live: Top Ten Club, Hamburg
Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.