‘Eight Days A Week’ Embraces The Beatles As A Sensation

LAS VEGAS — To hear Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr let it The Beatles wrote the most beloved songs in history to avoid being upstaged by rival  cover bands.

“The band before you can do your entire action,” McCartney claims of the Fab Four’s earliest days as live performers. “It was not like that great muse came down — it was the only way from the circumstance. We’d better write a few because then they can’t do them until we proceed.”

Both surviving Beatles are seated chummily, side by side, on an white crossover in a villa in The Mirage to talk about two Days a Week: The Touring Years. The documentary (in theatres Sept. 16, on Hulu Sept. 17), directed by Ron Howard,  tracks the band in concert — in the beginnings of Beatlemania during their last trek in 1966 — with  fan-sourced clips and new and archival interviews.

The project follows a story arc which asks, “How on earth did they remain sane and remain together through this tidal wave of fame, fortune, glitz and people yelling at them, without having their spirits expropriated?”   Producer Nigel Sinclair states.

Howard’s thought was to look at “this minute of this sort of burst through the point at which it was not really sustainable and  make an adventure narrative outside of it” states the manager, who saw John Lennon, George Harrison, McCartney and Starr burst into American consciousness in 1964 on The Ed Sullivan Show.   Three weeks later, when he turned 10, “I wanted a Beatle wig. And that’s exactly what I wore around for the birthday.”

In the film, The Beatles are seen performing sets that play like not able to hear themselves shrieks and nearly being crushed by fans that were surging.

“It is about us dealing with the life we had to direct in those days,” says Starr, 76. However, “we’re not full of fear. Some kid grabbed me and would not let go. I was somewhat sore for a while. But this was the most that ever occurred.”

The beginning of the stone age, the chaotic 1965 Shea Stadium series, proved momentous and manic.

“We could be very angry and upset in front of 56,000 people or get hysterics, and that’s exactly what kicked in,” says McCartney, 74. “And so there’s John performing his solo on I’m Down,” he says, running his elbow up and down an imaginary keyboard: ” ‘Rrrr, rrrr, rrrr.’ We are just ‘Ha, ha, ha.’ It just went to hysterics, which was often the safety valve”