American English helps Elgin celebrates the Beatles
By Chris Peterson For Sun-Times Media February 6, 2014 3:42PM
February 1964 is the focus of American English’s upcoming ECC performance. | Submitted photo
English presents ‘February 1964’
♦ Elgin Community College, 1700 Spartan Dr.
♦ 7:30 p.m. Feb. 8
♦ Tickets, $35
♦ (847) 622-0300
Updated: February 11, 2014 1:58PM
Nearly 50 years to the day from the Beatles’ appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” audiences in Elgin can experience the next best thing to actually being in the New York City studio that night.
American English, one of the most popular Beatles tribute bands in the world, will recreate the band’s performance on “The Ed Sullivan Show” with a special performance titled “February 1964” at the Elgin Community College Arts Center’s Blizzard Theater this weekend.
American English will recreate The Beatles’ first appearance on American television down to the last detail, including impersonator Bob Rumba playing the part of Ed Sullivan introducing the group. Since the group’s inception, American English has been hailed as one of the most authentic Beatles tribute groups by judges at Beatles conventions, critics and audiences.
A major component to the band’s success is that American English uses no pre-recorded music in its performances, playing everything live exactly the way The Beatles themselves did down to the last note.
In fact, no less a Beatles authority than the group’s original promoter from Liverpool, Sam Leach, has declared American English “the Beatles incarnate” and now personally manages them just as he did with their inspiration years ago. “They are without a doubt the world’s premier Beatle tribute band,” Leach said.
Over the years, American English has shared the stage with headliners including Three Dog Night, The Ides of March, The Neville Brothers, The Doobie Bros., and Badfinger. The group also is the only Beatles tribute group to perform alongside original members of Wings, Paul McCartney’s follow-up band after The Beatles broke up.
American English also headlined a tribute to George Harrison at Chicago’s House of Blues and performed live with The Beatles’ original drummer, Pete Best.
Recently, American English took its tribute to the Beatles even further, as the band traveled to London’s world-famous Abbey Road Studios — where The Beatles themselves famously recorded — and recorded “What If.” This album features songs that may have appeared on The Beatles’ follow-up to “Let It Be” if the group had remained together.