Neha Patil (Editor)

1964 the Tribute

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Genres  Rock
Record label  Roy Davies Music
Years active  1984 – present
Genre  Rock music
1964 the Tribute filesgreatermediacomuploadssites1320160519
Associated acts  Gary Grimes, The Beatles
Origin  United States of America (1984)
Members  Bobby Potter, Tom Work, Mark Benson
Albums  Nine Hours In November, Bootleg # 1
Similar  David Alan Miller, Aaron Diehl, Albany Symphony Orchestra, Warren Wolf, Edward Simon

1964 the Tribute is a Beatles' tribute band that was formed in 1984. It has performed more than 2,900 shows and released its own albums and videos. Rolling Stone magazine has called 1964 "the best Beatles tribute ever." It also was featured in a PBS special of the same name, the soundtrack to which is listed in the discography. 1964 the Tribute has been featured on Entertainment Tonight, PM Magazine, CNN, The USA Network and The Nashville Network.


While touring worldwide at concert halls, fairs, festivals, colleges, corporate events and conventions, the band was voted "Best Major Concert Act" and "Best Contemporary Act" by the readers of Campus Activities Today Magazine. It also was voted "Contemporary Music Artists of the Year" by the National Association for Campus Activities, and "Campus Entertainers of the Year" by the Canadian Association for Campus Activities. They band has appeared on scores of local television and radio programs throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and South America.

The group plans to continue performing. Asked about their future, Tom Work, who portrays George Harrison, said, "The answer to that is the answer Gary gave his dad. His dad asked him, 'How long are you going to do this?' And Gary Grimes (who played Paul McCartney until his death in 2010) said, 'Until they stop coming.' We are not anywhere close to the age the Beatles were. I'm sure many people will comment, 'They're starting to look a little old to be doing this,' but people are still coming. Just being a musician keeps you young at heart."

1964 the tribute beatles full concert

Updating the original Beatles

1964 the Tribute strive for authenticity in their portrayal of the Beatles, but not everything they do is the same. Two areas that differ are sound quality and set length. Mark Benson, who portrays John Lennon in the band, says in the original Beatles live performances in the 1960s, the fans were lucky to hear the music. "You have to credit the Beatles with revolutionizing the sound-reinforcement industry," says Benson. "Back then they had these little speakers that you couldn't hear anything out of. The way concerts were amplified had to be changed." Benson says fans who saw the original shows notice the difference. "People will come up to us and say, 'I saw the Beatles in '64 and the only difference is I can hear you,'" Benson says.

Another difference is the set length. The Beatles did two 30-minute sets in their early shows and never did encores, while 1964 the Tribute performs two 45-minute sets. "We tried the half-hour show initially, but it didn't go over well," says Benson.


The members of the group decided which member would portray which Beatle based on the instrument he played. "I was a guitarist, so the natural thing was the John or the George character," says Tom Work, who portrays George Harrison. "The way I got into it was, the fellow playing John Lennon [Benson] joined a band that was a local Beatles tribute act. This was around 1981. After about a year, he got his buddy [Grimes] to join and play Paul, and I was friends with him. About a year later, he got me to join and play George." Over the years, the lineup has included:

  • Mark Benson (1984-Present) as John Lennon
  • Gary Grimes (1984-2009), Todd Rainey (2009-2010), Ricky Vacca (2010-2011), Graham Alexander (2011-2013), Mac Ruffing (2013-Present) as Paul McCartney
  • Tom Work (1984-1986, 1990-1993, 2006-Present), Robert Miller (1986-1990), Tom Teeley (1993-1994), Jimmy Pou (1994-2006) as George Harrison
  • Greg George (1984-2006), Terry Manfredi (2006-2010), Bobby Potter (2010-Present) as Ringo Starr
  • The current lineup is Mark Benson, Tom Work, Mac Ruffing and Bobby Potter.

    Gary Grimes died after a long battle with brain cancer in December 2010 at age 60. His death was hard on members and fans. A memorial service was broadcast online. Mark Benson performed "In My Life" at the service.


    The band's mission is to accurately re-create the 1964 Beatles invasion of America. Members play a set of all early Beatles music, with some middle Beatles thrown in. Sometimes the group's costumes reflect the Beatles' early period, and sometimes members wear replicas of the Shea Stadium concert apparel from 1965. The "concept is performing a show that gives you an idea of what it was like to see the Beatles when they were touring," says Benson. "It's definitely a music gig, but there's an acting element to it," says Work. "None of us is really an actor per se. I probably come closest because I've done some plays, just in community theater. But there's some acting. You need to adopt the body language, the speaking voice. Those two things, I guess, for this kind of a role are two aspects that resemble acting. Everything else is more musicianship and vocal impersonation — singing, I mean." The group separates its life onstage from offstage. "We didn't want to be them, just wanted to portray them," says Work. "No one really considered wearing those boots around all the time or the tight pants or having hair that looked like that. We were musicians before, professional, full-time musicians. We didn't start doing Beatles until we were 30." The members are getting older, but are doing better than ever.

    PBS Soundtrack CD

    1. I Saw Her Standing There
    2. I Want to Hold Your Hand
    3. From Me to You
    4. Love Me Do
    5. Please Please Me
    6. Do You Want to Know a Secret?
    7. All My Loving
    8. This Boy
    9. And I Love Her
    10. Act Naturally
    11. Eight Days a Week
    12. A Hard Day's Night
    13. I Should Have Known Better
    14. If I Fell
    15. Can't Buy Me Love
    16. Nowhere Man
    17. Twist and Shout
    18. Roll Over Beethoven
    19. I Feel Fine
    20. Paperback Writer
    21. In My Life
    22. If I Needed Someone
    23. We Can Work It Out
    24. Yellow Submarine
    25. Yesterday
    26. Help!
    27. Day Tripper
    28. She Loves You

    Disc 1

    1. I Saw Her Standing There
    2. I Want To Hold Your Hand
    3. Love Me Do
    4. Please Please Me
    5. Do You Want to Know a Secret?
    6. All My Loving
    7. This Boy
    8. Till There Was You
    9. Eight Days a Week
    10. A Hard Day's Night
    11. I Should Have Known Better
    12. Nowhere Man
    13. Can't Buy Me Love

    Disc 2

    1. Twist and Shout
    2. Roll Over Beethoven
    3. I Feel Fine
    4. Michelle
    5. And Your Bird Can Sing
    6. Taxman
    7. I'm a Loser
    8. I Don't Want to Spoil the Party
    9. Yellow Submarine
    10. Yesterday
    11. Help!
    12. Day Tripper
    13. She Loves You
    14. Dizzy Miss Lizzy
    15. Long Tall Sally

    Nine Hours in November

    1. It Won't Be Long
    2. There's a Place
    3. I'll Follow the Sun
    4. If I Fell
    5. Boys
    6. Slow Down
    7. Kansas City
    8. Bad Boy
    9. Don't Bother Me
    10. And I Love Her
    11. Any Time at Al
    12. You Can't Do That
    13. I'm Down
    14. Rock and Roll Music

    Starhand Visions

    Original material by Gary Grimes. Other members are on the album throughout it.

    1. They're Here...
    2. The Arrival Theme
    3. The Illusion
    4. From the Light of Change
    5. Hold On
    6. Hold On to Love
    7. Daydream Lover
    8. Marla Star
    9. Take Good Care of Her Heart
    10. Would You Say No?
    11. Tell Her I'm Home
    12. You Are My Heart
    13. Because of You
    14. I Can't Live Without Your Love
    15. Feel the Fire


    Anytime At AllNine Hours In November · 2001
    The Night BeforeBootleg # 1 · 2008
    I'm DownNine Hours In November · 2001


    1964 the Tribute Wikipedia