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Beatles Blitz-Tournee 1966

June 1966

1966_bravo_beatles_bltiztournee_a.jpg picture by anothergirl83
The "Bravo Beatles Blitz-Tournee"

The Beatles arrived in Germany on June 23, 1966. The dates for the short tour were:

June 24: two performances at Circus Krone in Munich.

June 25: performance at the Gruga Halle in Essen.

June 26: performance at the Ernst Merck Halle in Hamburg.

The playlist for the Hamburg concert:
This is from a picture of the playlist, taped to George's guitar.

Rock & Roll
She's A Woman
If I Needed
Baby's In Black
I Feel Fine
Be Your Man
Nowhere Man

Background & memories

The teen magazine BRAVO held its annual "Otto Wahl" (an awards contest that allows readers to vote for their favorites), in which they chose, among other categories, the best band, in May 1966. The results show just how popular the Beatles were in Germany:

1. The Beatles 115,476

2. The Rolling Stones 74,088

3. The Rainbows 10,274

The audience numbers for the concerts:

Munich 3,500 per show

Essen 8,000 per show

Hamburg 5,600 per show

Here are some rare photos taken during this "Blitz-Tour".
These pictures are copyright
Germany 1966
Germany 1966
Germany 1966
Germany 1966

Germany 1966

From the official tour itinerary

"26th of June

4:45 | Arrival of the special train in Ahrensburg/Holstein. Group of cars will travel to the Hotel Tremsbüttel. Arrival there at about 5:15.

3:00 p.m. | The BEATLES will be picked up by the Hamburg police and taken to the Ernst-Merck-Halle. Arrival there at about 3:45 p.m.. Entry through "Tor 9", Karolinenstrasse.

5:15 p.m. | Start of press conference in the conference rooms 3 and 4 in the "Festhalle" of the exhibition grounds "Planten un Blomen", then to the stage room of the Ernst-Merck-Halle. After the end of the press conference, departure of press through an exit to the Jungiusstrasse.

ca. 9:10 p.m. | Return trip by the BEATLES to the "Schlosshotel Tremsbüttel", lead by the Hamburg police. At the hotel itself, there will be a car of the Schleswig-Holstein police, to which e.g. nighttime excursions of the BEATLES are to be reported. From this car, other police stations will be informed.

27th June

ca. 2:30 p.m. | The BEATLES will be picked up by the Hamburg police and brought to the airport Hamburg-Fuhlsbüttel. There the BEATLES will be staying in the VIP-lounge of Japan Airlines until their departure."
And if you're curious as to what the Beatles were served on board the special train (which had previously been used by Queen Elizabeth II on her German visit), these were the menus:

Orange Juice
Tomato Juice
Grapefruit Juice
Fresh Grapefruit
Fruits of the Season
Corn Flakes
Hot Milke
Toast or Rolls
Assorted Bread
Boiled, Fried, Scrambled
Bacon, Ham
Cream of Mushroom Soup
Filet of Veal "Badian Style"
Cauliflower au Gratin
Chateau Potatos
Ice Cream Fürst Pückler

Princess Soup
Bordelaise Sauce
Rissolée Potatos
Salads of the Season
Fruit Salad with [whipped] Cream


Trepang Soup
Cheese Sticks
Tournedos "Rossini"
Fine Vegetables
French Fried Potatos
Various Salads
Ice Cream "Fürst Pückler" with waffles


Shrimp cocktail
Clear Ox-tail Soup with old Sherry
Medaillons of Veal "Hawaii"
Artichokes with Hollandaise Sauce
Green Peas
Duchess Potatos
Salads with Roquefort Dressing
Kronberger Strawberries with [whipped] Cream
Walsh Rarebits
* * *
What The Beatles wore while in Hamburg:
- Arriving:
John: cream-colored jacket, dark pants/trousers, white shirt
Paul: light-colored jacket, dark pants/trousers, light colored shirt, tie (red?) with stripes
George: black-purple striped velvet jacket, dark purple pants/trousers, grey sweater
Ringo: brown suede coat, dark trousers, dark sweater
- At the press conference:
John: cream-colored jacket, light colored pants/trousers, white striped shirt
Paul: dark brown suede coat, dark pants/trousers, dark shirt
George: dark double-breasted jacket, dark pants/trousers, light colored shirt
Ringo: dark double-breasted jacket, dark pants/trousers, yellow patterned shirt
- Departing:
John: light colored suit, light colored sweater
Paul: light colored jacket, dark pants/trousers, light colored shirt, tie
George: dark double-breasted jacket, dark pants/trousers, light colored shirt
Ringo: brown suede coat, blue jeans, dark sweater
* * *
Excerpts from the Hamburg press conference
Maybe it was the language barrier or the press was just... not so great.
Q: George, what about the parties?
George: What parties?
Paul: Any party. Do you wanna go?
George: What about the parties? What about the dance...
John: What about the sky?
Q: Kisses?
John: What about them? Do you want some?
Paul: Later! OK. You can can do it later!
Q: Do you have any connections with your German friends or Hamburg friends?
John: Yes, we all got VD.
Q: (to Paul) Do you still remember your first love Corry?
George: Wurst?
[This is a play on words - curry wurst is a German snack originating in Berlin, basically a bratwurst with a curry-ketchup sauce.]
Paul: Was that my first love?
John: That was his thirty-first!
Paul: Pals!
Q: Do you think your time in Hamburg has been important for your career?
John/Paul: Yes! Very important.
Q: Why?
Paul: Why? Because we played a lot and it was good for us. Good audience.
Q: What was your worst and best experience here in Hamburg?
Paul: The Reeperbahn at seven in the morning.
Q: In the Hoelle?
Paul: All over the place! Seven o'clock in the morning. How can you mind us.
Q: How many girls have you had here in Hamburg?
Paul: One or two, you know.
George: What do you mean with "had"?
Q: John, do you like Henry Miller?
John: Miller, he's alright. I wouldn't go to bed with him!
Q: Thank you, that's all.
John: It's a pleasure!
Following this, the press wanted to know what Paul thought of the pill, whether George wanted to dance tonight (someone seems to have been hung up on this issue) and what they thought of a very positive article by Peter Sellers about them (they didn't know about it and hadn't read it).
Q: Do you know the German language still?
Paul: Oh yes, perfectly!
Q: And Plattdeutsch also? [A Northern dialect]
Paul: Oh, yes. Speak it like...
John: Fischmarket, that's one of it... Grosse Freiheit - that's German!
Q: Ringo, who is greater? Cassius Clay or you?
Ringo: What's the tosso?
At this point, John ridiculed the inane questions, especially the fact that they all began with "what about this, what about that". ;)
Q: George, do you wear long underpants in wintertime?
George: Lange Unterhosen? No!
Q: Paul, your latest record has been marvellous, but why do you get to start being noisier again?
Paul: Well you know, we keep changing. Just gets noisier, then it gets quieter, then it gets noisier again. You know, it's one of those things.
Q: The future of the new Beatle songs?
Paul: We don't know what's going to be. Just changes from record to record.
Q: John, somebody says you have stolen parts from your book "A Spaniard In The Works".
John: Well, I have, it's true. Why not?
Q: From James Joyce.
John: No, not him. Some old Italian translation book is on it. I thought it was dead and buried but they find out...
Q: John, is it real that you are very lazy?
John: Yeah. Well, I don't know, but I worked hard 'cause I got to.
Q: Will Zak follow you to Tokyo?
Ringo: No, no.
John: What kind of questions? Come on. Anybody from the press here?
A spokesperson then announced that John had just enquired whether or not anyone press representatives with "questions that would be worth an answer" were here.
Q: Ringo, what do you think about coming back to Hamburg?
Ringo: It's OK!
Q: That's all?
Ringo: What else do you want?
Q: Do you want to see the Star Club?
Paul: If we get a chance. But we may not be able to. It depends - we'd like to.
Q: What do you make tomorrow all the day till 5 o'clock?
John: Sleep! Sleeping!
Paul: Sleep!
Q: What do you think about your fans in Germany, Ringo?
Ringo: They're good, they are the same as everywhere else... Always loud voices everywhere.
Q: John, a question about your book. Do you think it is literature or are you writing only for fun?
John: It's both, isn't it? Doesn't have to be one or the other.
Q: Do you think it is great literature like James Joyce?
John: It has nothing to do with James Joyce. You've been reading the wrong books and magazines. It has nothing to do with it. It's just a book, you know.
Q: Your lyrics - it is able that Paul makes the music for it?
John: I am making it myself id anybody's gonna do it.
Q: What do you dream of if you sleep?
Paul: Same as everybody else dreams of.
John: What do you think we are? What do you dream of?
Paul: The same things as everybody dreams of.
Ringo: The same that you dream. It's all the same.
John: We are only the same as you, but only we are rich.
A question about Bill Ramsey followed - if they remembered him.
Q: Paul, do you see a chance to come back to Hamburg in a short time?
Paul: We are back!
Q: I mean again.
Paul: Oh again! I don't know really. You have to ask Mr. Brian Epstein.
Q: Would you like to come back?
Paul: Oh yes. Always like to.
Q: Why are you all so horrid snobby?
Paul: We are not horrid snobby!
Q: Yes you are!
George: In your mind we are.
John: That's your version because we are not flattering you.
Paul: You expect nice answers to all the questions - these questions aren't nice questions - they don't have to be nice answers and if we don't give nice answers it doesn't mean we are snobby. It means we are natural. (Applause.)
Taken from the great book The Bravo-Beatles-Blitztournee by Thorsten Knublauch.

Information about the tour itinerary and menu comes from the book "Internationale Pilzvergiftung" by Bernd Matheja (2003).