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60 years since The Beatles achieved their first Billboard Hot 100 No. 1

Authored by Alice Broome
Published on 1st February, 2024 2 min read

60 years since The Beatles achieved their first Billboard Hot 100 No. 1

Today (01/02/2024) marks 60 years since The Beatles achieved their first American No. 1 with “I Want to Hold Your Hand”.

Recorded on 17 October 1963,  “I Want to Hold Your Hand” was written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. It was the first Beatles song to use four-track recording equipment. The song was highly anticipated in the UK, with the single receiving over one million advance orders. What is perhaps most notable about the song, however, was its success in the United States. 

On 18 January 1964, the song entered the Billboard Hot 100 chart at number 45. It reached the top of the charts two weeks later, on 1 February. It remained number one for seven weeks, before it was dislodged by another Beatles hit: “She Loves You”. "I Want to Hold Your Hand” stayed on the Billboard Hot 100 for 15 weeks.

The success of “I Want to Hold Your Hand” in the US is seen as part of the so-called “British Invasion” of the American music industry. The “invasion” was a cultural phenomenon that began around the mid-1960s when British music acts and other aspects of British pop culture were embraced on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. In addition to The Beatles, the “invasion” also included artists such as The Who, The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, Tom Jones, Cilla Black, and Dusty Springfield.

“I Want to Hold Your Hand” remains an iconic Beatles song. In 2018, Billboard magazine named it the 48th biggest hit of all time.

Authored by Alice Broome

Alice Broome

Alice Broome is an Editorial Assistant at British Online Archives. She is a Philosophy, Politics, and Economics graduate from the University of York.

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The British Online Archives Notable Days diary is a platform intended to mark key dates and events throughout the year. The posts draw attention to historical events and figures, as well as recurring cultural traditions and international awareness days, in both religious and secular contexts.

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