Backlash and breakup
In July 1966, an out-of-context comment from a serious interview caused a backlash against The Beatles from religious and social conservatives in the Bible Belt of the US . Lennon had offered his opinion that Christianity was dying and that the group was "more popular than Jesus" - something that he referred to as a topic that caused concern and consideration. The Beatles records were banned and burned in many cities and towns across America (primarily in the South) and from countries such as South Africa . Lennon apologised several times for his remarks.
The Beatles performed their last concert before paying fans in Candlestick Park in San Francisco on 29 August 1966. From then on, they concentrated on recording music. The Beatles' situation took a turn for the worse when manager Brian Epstein died in August 1967, at the age of 32, and the band's affairs began to unravel. Just two months earlier, on June 25, 1967, The Beatles became the first band globally transmitted on television, in front of an estimated 400 million people worldwide. The Beatles were a segment within the first-ever worldwide TV satellite hook-up - a show titled Our World. The Beatles' contribution was transmitted live from the EMI studios at Abbey Road in London, and their song All You Need Is Love was recorded live during the show. At the end of 1967, they received their first major press criticism in the UK with negative reviews of their surrealistic TV film Magical Mystery Tour.
In 1968, the group spent the early part of the year in Rishikesh, Uttar Pradesh, India studying transcendental meditation with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Upon their return, Lennon and McCartney took a trip to New York in order to announce the formation of Apple Corps; an - initially - altruistic business venture which they described at the time as an attempt at "western communism." The latter part of 1968 saw the band busy recording the double album The Beatles, popularly known as The White Album due to its stark-white cover. These sessions saw deep divisions opening within the band.
Their final live performance was on the rooftop of the Apple building in Savile Row, London in January 1969, during the difficult Get Back sessions (later used as a basis for the Let It Be album). Largely due to McCartney's efforts, they recorded their final album, Abbey Road in the summer of 1969. The band officially broke up in April 1970, and one month later Let It Be followed as their last commercial album release.