The Beatles Wiki


The Beatles Wiki
1964 the Tribute

1964 the Tribute (originally called 1964 as The Beatles) is a Beatles' tribute band that was formed in 1984. The group plans to continue performing. Asked about their future, Tom Work, who portrayed George Harrison until 2022, 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 retirement in 2009 due to brain cancer which he eventually died of 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."

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 portrayed 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; died 2010), Todd Rainey (2009-2010), Ricky Vacca (2010-2011), Graham Alexander (2011-2013), Mac Ruffing (2013-Present) as Paul McCartney
  • Tom Work (1984-1986, 1989-1993, 2006-2022), Robert Miller (1986-1989), Tom Teeley (1993-1994), Jimmy Pou (1994-2006), Doug Couture (2022-Present) as George Harrison.
  • Greg George (1984-1987, 1989-2006), Terry Manfredi (1987-1989, 2006-2010), Bobby Potter (2010-2023), Joseph Bologna (2023-Present) as Ringo Starr

The current lineup is Mark Benson, Mac Ruffing, Doug Couture and Joseph Bologna.

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."


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

"All You Need Is Live!"[]

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 All
  12. You Can't Do That
  13. I'm Down
  14. Rock And Roll Music

30/50 Celebration[]

  1. I Want To Hold Your Hand
  2. I Saw Her Standing There
  3. Love Me Do
  4. Thank You Girl
  5. Please Please Me
  6. I'll Get You
  7. I'm Happy Just To Dance With You
  8. All My Loving
  9. Boys
  10. And I Love Her
  11. A Hard Days Night
  12. If I Fell
  13. Money
  14. She Loves You

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