Beatle John Lennon (1940-1980) had a witty sense of humor. During live performances of “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” Lennon often changed the words to “I want to hold your gland,” because of the difficulty hearing the vocals above the noise of screaming audiences in the grip of Beatlemania.
At the Royal Variety Show in 1963—in the presence of members of the British royalty, including Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Princess Margaret, and Lord Snowdon —Lennon quipped to the largely upper-crust audience:
“For our next song, I’d like to ask for your help. For the people in the cheaper seats, clap your hands … and the rest of you, if you’ll just rattle your jewelry.”
A clip from this London performance is shown below, with the Beatles singing, “With Love From Me to You,” “Until There Was You,” and “Twist and Shout.” Paul makes a joke before “Until There Was You,” referring to American singer Sophie Tucker as a group (she was large). John makes his jewelry comment before playing my all-time favorite “Twist and Shout.” Enjoy.