August 11, 1966 – The Beatles arrive in Chicago in the middle of a swirling controversy, and John Lennon, in a press conference at the Astor Towers Hotel, apologizes for his part in creating the furor that developed after his casual remark that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus. “I wasn’t saying whatever they say I was saying,” says Lennon, described by the Tribune as a “Shaggy-haired Liverpool performer.” [Chicago Tribune, August 11, 1966] “I ‘m sorry I said it really. I never meant it to be a lousy anti-religious thing. I apologize if that will make you happy. I still don’t know quite what I’ve done. I’ve tried to tell you what I did do but if you want me to apologize, if that will make you happy, then OK, I’m sorry.” For a personal essay on the event and how it has stayed with me for fifty years, you may want to look up this blog entry from 2009. Information concerning Astor Towers, where the press conference took place, may be found here.