Music promoter and producer Sid Bernstein, most famous for bringing the Beatles to Carnegie Hall and Shea Stadium, has died. He was 95.
Beyond the Beatles, Bernstein was a key force in the British invasion of America, bringing such artists as the Rolling Stones, the Kinks, Herman’s Hermits and the Moody Blues to these shores.
Prior to his British collaborations, Bernstein was an agent at General Artists Corporation, producing the comeback tour of Judy Garland and, later, on June 9, 1962, bringing Tony Bennett to Carnegie Hall, a turning point in his career.
In early 1964, Bernstein decided to invest his own money in promoting the Beatles to America after his agency showed no interest. On February 9, 1964, the Fab Four debuted on the Ed Sullivan show and, three days later, played two shows at Carnegie Hall. Sid brought them back a year later for the infamous Shea Stadium concert.
Bernstein followed with more artists out of England but he also took an interest in native American acts. During the Beatles’ Shea Stadium concert, he kept putting the phrase “The Rascals are coming!” on the venue screen, a reference to the Young Rascals who he was promoting. He worked with them throughout their hitmaking years.
Among the other artists that he promoted were Frank Sinatra, Jimi Hendrix, Sly and the Family Stone and, later, Laura Branigan and Lenny Kravitz along with a just breaking ABBA.
He never truly retired, releasing his first album last year, Sid Bernstein Presents… He also wrote the books It’s Sid Bernstein Calling and Not Just the Beatles…
Bernstein is survived by his wife, six children and six grandchildren.