The 65th Annual Emmy Awards took a brief break from rewarding current TV hits to highlight two landmark moments in the medium’s history from nearly 50 years ago: the coverage of the JFK assassination and The Beatles‘s US debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. Don Cheadle last night (September 22) spoke about the still-chilling moment on November 22, 1963 when the president was killed and the impact of the ensuing news coverage, before transitioning to the lighter (but still significant) moment The Beatles officially invaded the US via our TV sets.
So to celebrate that incredible moment in pop music? The Emmys enlisted superstar Carrie Underwood. But instead of a lively cover of, say, “I Want To Hold Your Hand,” which the band performed during that February 9, 1964 debut appearance, Underwood was tasked with “Yesterday,” one of the most-covered songs in music history. (This is the same braintrust that declared Modern Family is better than 30 Rock and Louie… but hey, Paul McCartney approved of it.)
Dressed in a lovely blue gown, Underwood turned out a twangy acoustic cover of the Help! classic, and it was pretty enough, but instead of a celebration of an exciting pop cultural landmark, it felt more like one of those “in remembrance of” tributes. Check it out up top, and then let us know how it compares to Demi Lovato and Naya Rivera‘s recent Beatles cover.