Watch Beach Boys' Touching Tribute to Nancy Reagan - Rolling Stone
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Watch Beach Boys’ Touching Tribute to Nancy Reagan

Group performed Four Freshmen’s “Their Hearts Were Full of Spring” in memory of former first lady

The Beach Boys, who performed at President Ronald Reagan’s 1985 inaugural ball, paid tribute to Nancy Reagan Sunday night at their concert in Abilene, Texas, just hours after it was revealed that the former first lady had died at the age of 94. For the tribute, Mike Love and the Beach Boys performed an a cappella take on the Four Freshmen’s “Their Hearts Were Full of Spring,” the same song they performed at Reagan’s 1985 gala.

Before performing the song, video screens projected Love’s comments about the then-first lady from 1985. “Lovely California girl, Nancy: You have been an inspiration to all of us, and it’s nothing to do with politics—nothing to do with boundaries or borders, either,” Love said at the time. “This inspiration has to do with the obvious love and affection and the deep devotion they share. Their love is eternal, and their hearts will always be full of spring.” The video screens then showed images of Nancy Reagan while the Beach Boys sang “Their Hearts Were Full of Spring.”

Following the performance, Love noted that the Beach Boys also performed at an event celebrating what would have been Reagan’s 100th birthday, which was the last time they saw Nancy Reagan.

Both Ronald and Nancy Reagan proclaimed themselves as Beach Boys fans during their White House stay, with the president even coining the group “America’s Band.” From 1980 to 1982, the Beach Boys would perform in Washington, D.C.’s National Mall on July 4th, an event that was halted in 1983 by Secretary of the Interior James Watt, who believed rock bands shouldn’t perform there on Independence Day. However, Nancy Reagan came to the Beach Boys’ defense and the group was back at the National Mall in 1984, performing to a crowd of 750,000.

Watch the Beach Boys’ 1985 performance at the Reagan inaugural ball below:


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