A fondly-remembered duo at the heart of the original British Invasion can be seen performing live in a newly-shared clip of Peter & Gordon’s “Five Hundred Miles” from the archive of The Ed Sullivan Show.
Peter Asher and Gordon Waller had crashed onto the American pop scene in the late spring of 1964 with the Capitol Records single “A World Without Love,” The Lennon–McCartney song bathed in the limelight afforded any artist or release with a Beatles connection, and spent a week at No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in June.
Peter & Gordon went on to win an enduring audience in the US and far beyond, making no fewer than seven further visits to the Top 20, two of which were Top 10 singles in Del Shannon’s “I Go To Pieces,” in 1965, and the autumn 1966 release “Lady Godiva.”
They also scored with such covers as Buddy Holly’s “True Love Ways” and the Teddy Bears’ “To Know You Is To Love You” and with “Woman,” written by Paul McCartney anonymously as Bernard Webb. He opted for the pseudonym to see if his writing would be successful without his own name attached to it.
“Five Hundred Miles” was on the November 15, 1964 edition of Sullivan, accompanied by the wild screams of teenage girl fans. Their fellow guests were beloved entertainer Sammy Davis Jr. and singer-actress Kaye Stevens. By the time of the broadcast, the duo had had further success with McCartney’s songs “Nobody I Know” and “I Don’t Want To See You Again.”
Their first, self-titled album came out in June that year in December 1964, and included Hedy West’s “Five Hundred Miles.” It was followed by both the Columbia release In Touch With Peter and Gordon and the next Capitol set I Don’t Want To See You Again.
Watch all the latest archival videos from The Ed Sullivan Show on the program’s official YouTube channel.