The hyperbole surrounding the opening of the Golden 1 Center will reach a climax on Tuesday, Oct. 4.
Paul McCartney, arguably the world’s biggest rock star (Mr. Springsteen, you’ll stand down for this moment, won’t you?) will christen the state-of-art venue with two highly anticipated sold-out concerts.
McCartney, 74, needs little introduction; calling his catalog of achievements “imposing” barely approaches his significance. Much of his gravitas comes from being a member of the Beatles and co-composer and co-lead voice of their genre-defining songbook.
To gently refresh your memory, the Beatles are the best-selling music artists in the United States, having sold 178 million certified units. With McCartney, co-composer and vocalist John Lennon, guitarist and songwriter George Harrison, and drummer Ringo Starr, the Beatles were active between 1960 and 1970 and recorded 12 original studio albums from 1963 to 1970. The band had more No. 1 albums on the British charts and sold more singles in Britain than any other act. It owns a record 20 No. 1 hits on Billboard’s all-time Hot 100 chart. The Beatles account for three of the top five albums in Rolling Stone’s Top 500 albums of all time: 1967’s “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band (No. 1); 1966’s “Revolver” (No. 3) and 1965’s “Rubber Soul” (No. 5).
McCartney’s Beatles song “Yesterday” has been recorded more than 2,200 times. His post-Beatles band Wings released “Mull of Kintyre,” one of the all-time best-selling singles in Britain. A 21-time Grammy Award winner, McCartney wrote or co-wrote 32 songs that reached No. 1 on the Billboard charts.
Those are just numbers, though.
The Beatles’ global cultural impact may never be exceeded simply because of how much they dominated worldwide consciousness when they were a performing band. Beyond era-defining music, the Beatles with their clothes, movies and cheeky engaging public personas changed the world.