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The_Beatles_-_"Jesus_Apology"_Press_Conference_-_Restored_Full_-_Aug_12,_1966

The Beatles - "Jesus Apology" Press Conference - Restored Full - Aug 12, 1966

"More popular than Jesus" is part of a remark made by John Lennon of the Beatles in a March 1966 interview in which he argued that the public were more infatuated with the band than with Jesus and that Christian faith was declining to the extent that it might be outlasted by rock music. His opinions drew no controversy when originally published in the London newspaper The Evening Standard, but drew angry reactions from Christian communities when republished in the United States that July.

Lennon's comments incited protests and threats, particularly throughout the Bible Belt in the Southern US. Some radio stations stopped playing Beatles songs, records were publicly burned, and press conferences were cancelled. The controversy coincided with the band's 1966 US tour and overshadowed press coverage of their newest album, Revolver. Lennon later repeatedly apologised and clarified at a series of press conferences that he was not comparing himself or the band to Christ.

The controversy exacerbated the band's unhappiness with touring, which they never undertook again; Lennon also refrained from touring in his solo career. In 1980, he was murdered by a Christian fan of the Beatles, who later cited Lennon's quote as one of his possible motives in the killing.

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