Webster University audio student Andrew Witthaus checked the sound levels on the fourth floor of Emerson Library while a Beatles tribute band set up its instruments on the library’s rooftop patio.
Witthaus, Student Chair of the Audio Engineering Society (AES), was one of about 10 students who ran the audio for the concert.
Abbey Road Warriors, a local tribute band, performed on the library’s roof on Thursday, Jan. 30.
The band played to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Beatles’ rooftop concert, but Chair of Audio Production Barry Hufker said this event was really to celebrate the skills of his students.
Witthaus was in charge of audio during the concert. He said that he and a few others had worked Wednesday night testing equipment in preparation. During the concert, Witthaus said that things ran smoothly, and he was happy with everyone’s contribution.
“I decided to go out on the quad,” Witthaus said. “I wanted to see how many people actually showed up, and I was kind of flabbergasted.”
Hufker said he is a Beatles fan and knew that Jan. 30 was an iconic day for fellow Beatlemaniacs. When planning began back in November, every email Hufker sent out was titled “I hope you’re a Beatles fan.” Hufker said people were immediately on board.
Hufker picked the Abbey Road Warriors because he felt they played well like the Beatles. The band is made up of four local music educators. Band creator Steve Hoover said they play the Beatles out of love for the music, and that was payment enough for Abbey Road Warriors. The concert was free, and the band did not receive any payment for its performance.
The weather was cold, cloudy and windy, just as it was on Jan. 30, 1969, when the Beatles performed. Both performances were at noon and were not
advertised beforehand. About 50 people showed up on the quad at the peak of the performance, and teachers in Sverdrup opened their windows to watch.
Freshman Kelly Otto said she could hear the music in front of West Hall. Beatles fans in the crowd sang along to the same set the Beatles played 45 years ago, as well as the classics like “I Want to Hold Your Hand.”
Hufker was almost tearful when the performance ended.
“It was great to see the plan that I had conceived in November come to such a great fruition,” Hufker said.
Witthaus and Hufker said there were no problems during the concert, and Hufker said he was proud of his students’ professionalism. Witthaus said they were good to work with.
“You have no idea how happy everybody was upstairs,” Witthaus said in reference to his audio crew.