The Beatles make history with All You Need Is Love

Our World was the world’s first live television satellite link-up and was seen by approx 400 million people across five continents on June 25, 1967. John Lennon wrote All You Need is Love especially for this occasion, to the brief given by the BBC: the song had to be simple so that viewers all around the world could understand it and easily sing along.

Personalities, including Maria Callas and Pablo Picasso, from 19 different nations performed from their respective countries, with The Beatles representing Great Britain. No politicians or heads of state were allowed to take part in the broadcast, and no pre-recorded videotape or film was allowed. Around 10,000 technicians, producers and translators helped make the event happen.

During the performance The Beatles were surrounded by their friends including Mick Jagger, Keith Richard, Marianne Faithfull, Keith Moon, Eric Clapton, Pattie Harrison, Jane Asher, Graham Nash and Hunter Davies. Everyone was dressed in colourful clothes, and surrounded by flowers, balloons and placards.


All You Need is Love was a popular phrase in the 60s anti-war movement and the song was released in the middle of the Summer of Love and became a big part of the vibe.

Lennon wrote the song as a continuation of the idea he was trying to express in his 1965 song The Word. He was fascinated by how slogans effect the masses. In a 1971 interview about his song Power To The People, he was asked if that song was propaganda. He said, "Sure. So was All You Need Is Love. I'm a revolutionary artist. My art is dedicated to change.”

During an interview with NME, John Lennon's son Sean was asked what his favourite lyric was: "I like it when my dad said: 'There's nothing you can know that isn't known/ Nothing you can see that isn't shown/ Nowhere you can go that isn't where you're meant to be.' It seems to be a good representation of the sort of enlightenment that came out of the '60s."

Watch the video above, or tap here to play in C5.

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