I’ve tried not to get sucked in too much to the Beatles Arrive In America nostalgia wave. Mostly because I feel like I’ve read plenty about them already and it’s enough for me just to spin some of their tunes.

This piece, though, is fantastic. In it, Billboard takes an in-depth look at the process of getting the Beatles on American radio in 1963. I don’t think I realized how much work it took to get them on the cultural radar here, and then how quickly they became the biggest thing in the country.

Most interesting to me was how it took – shocking! – violating copyright laws to finally get American radio to adopt the band. Funny how that made the music industry in 1963 and then blew it apart 40 years later.

It’s quite long, but well worth the time.

How the Beatles Went Viral: Blunders, Technology & Luck Broke the Fab Four in America