Saturday, September 30, 2006
Imagine? Help? Give Peace A Chance? 53 musicians choose their favourite John Lennon songs.
I am the Walrus
I’m So Tired
Working Class Hero
Watching The Wheels
Happiness Is A Warm Gun
Bring On The Lucie (Freda People)
Tomorrow Never Knows
Happy Xmas (War Is Over)
Across The Universe
A Day In The Life
In My Life
Strawberry Fields Forever
Give Peace A Chance
A Hard Day’s Night
I'm Losing You
Compiled from lists appearing in Mojo: John Lennon 2000 and Uncut 2005
Friday, September 29, 2006
"Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band" is one of the most important steps in our career. It had to be just right. We tried and I think succeeded in achieving what we set out to do. If we hadn’t, then it wouldn’t be out now.
"How can we tour like we used to? We can’t...We could send out four waxwork dummies of ourselves and let them stand on stage and probably make another million quid, but we don’t want it. How can we tour when we’re making stuff like we did on the last album? We can only do what we’re doing. We’ve toured. That was then. If we do another tour we’d probably use London for one big happening and we’d have us and the Stones and the Who and everybody else on it. Unless that happens, forget it, man.
"I don’t want to be a moptop. For those who want moptops, the Monkees are right up there, man."
John Lennon on why the Beatles stopped touring, November 1967
Sunday, September 24, 2006
Friday, September 22, 2006
Lennon's lyrics in airport touchdown
Sep 21 2006
By Sam Lister, Daily Post Staff
A GIANT coloured vinyl quoting John Lennon lyrics has been installed at Liverpool airport.
The artwork is the last one from this year's Liverpool Biennial to be completed and is now on display to passengers.
The work, by Portuguese artist and political activist Rigo 23, has been hung around the check-in area, arrivals area, and on the glass facade of the airport terminal building.
They are daubed with excerpts from Lennon's songs.
These include such titles as Give Peace a Chance, Imagine, Well Well Well and Give Me Some Truth.
The piece looks at how the former Beatles' words are still significant today.
Lewis Biggs, chief executive of Liverpool Biennial, said: "As in our previous festivals, Liverpool Biennial is hugely grateful for the support of Liverpool John Lennon Airport."
Full story here
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
Sunday, September 17, 2006
Saturday, September 16, 2006
"I think one of the saddest things in the entire world is a man who is unhappy in his work. Men are motivated by a desire to be successful in their life’s work. I don’t necessarily mean financial success, but rather the kind of satisfaction and fulfilment you get out of doing a job you like and doing it well. It’s a feeling of giving something of yourself to society, to other people, to eternity.
"The important thing is to do something the way you, as an individual, see it as being right. Take The Beatles’ music, for example. We’re branching off into countless different directions, and some people may very well not like the form of music we’re working with. But the point is that we think it’s important for us to do this. We’re growing, prospering and satisfying ourselves by the kind of work we’re doing.
"The film that I acted in is another example. Testing my acting abilities was a new form of work for me which brought me a great deal of pleasure. It was something that I worked hard at and enjoyed doing. Working your hardest at something that you enjoy, regardless of what anyone else thinks or does, is what I truly feel is love of work."
John Lennon on 'love of work', November, 1967
Friday, September 15, 2006
Yoko Ono gives away peace prize
The anniversary of John Lennon's birthday on October 9 will be commemorated with two peace events organised by Yoko Ono.
The LennonOno Grant for Peace will give out two $50,000 prizes to the Medecins Sans Frontieres and the Centre for Constitutional Rights.
In a statement Yoko Ono said: "These two groups look beyond today's conflicts and destruction and envision a positive future for our society, while working selflessly and tirelessly towards establishing a more peaceful environment for our planet.
"They are strong representatives of the many groups who are working in the same direction, today. They need and deserve all of our support and respect."
In addition to this, the Imagine Peace Tower is set to be constructed in Reykjavik. The base of it will be filled with international prayers and wishes. It will stand as a symbol of world peace.
Ono says: "Each one of us was born at this time, not by chance, but to fulfil a mission. Our work is not yet done.
"I know that John's spirit will be joining us on that day, October 9th, in Reykjavik and I look forward to seeing you there to celebrate this exciting day. WAR IS OVER, if you want it. I love you."
Sep 14 2006
You could call it extreme karaoke, an extraordinary tribute to John Lennon which saw 40 of the late musician's most ardent fans singing their hearts out.
But instead of an alcohol-fuelled blast in a smoky pub, the Lennon fans were exercising their lungs for a forthcoming attraction at Baltic, the cutting edge Gateshead gallery.
Full story here
Thu Sep 14, 2006 10:03am ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A new film about John Lennon's peace campaign and the U.S. government's efforts to silence him presents the former Beatle as a Superman figure battling evil, but no saint, according to his widow Yoko Ono.
"The U.S. vs John Lennon," which will be released in New York and Los Angeles on Friday, is a documentary pieced together from old newsreels and rarely seen home movies.
It documents FBI surveillance of Lennon and his battle with immigration authorities who tried to deport him in the 1970s in what the film says was an effort to stifle his anti-Vietnam War activism.
Some critics said the film effectively presents Lennon and Ono as united throughout even though they were separated and he was living with another woman for more than a year at the time.
"This story, which is the true story and a very important story, has not been discussed so much as the tabloid thing," she said at a news conference.
"I don't think he's coming out as a saint," Ono added, pointing to scenes where Lennon is angry or impatient.
"The struggle that he went through confronting these big powers, it's almost like a very interesting Superman kind of thing -- bad against good," she said.
Full story here
Thursday, September 14, 2006
John Lennon talks about his fans to Beatle Book Monthly (May, 1964):
"I never realized exactly what fans were like until we left the Liverpool scene. We never thought of the girls of The Cavern as fans. They were friends we'd met and chatted up in the clubs. In those days I suppose to be a Beatle fan meant to join the four of us in the coke bar between sessions and to talk about guitars and new numbers and the possibility of having success with our first record.
"I first became aware of having fans when strangers actually came up to me in the street to ask me to sign their books or pictures. In Liverpool, there wasn't any need to ask for autographs because we were all on first-name terms with most of the girls who followed us around from club to club. The idea of being recognized in London or in Glasgow by people I'd never seen before was a bit frightening at first. I suddenly felt as though eyes were staring at me from holes in every wall and hidden voices were whispering "That's John Lennon out of that Liverpool group".
"The next stage was to feel all proud and important because so many different people wanted to know us. Then came the time when we'd find great crowds waiting for us wherever we went. Even if it was just a broadcasting studio and there hadn't been any publicity to tell the fans where to find us. These days, Beatle People roll up in big numbers in all sorts of unexpected places. It's great. We finish up having races with the fans to see who can reach doorways first. If they win, we loose a tie or a scarf or something. It's terrific to know that so many people are interested in you. I only wish we could be on friendly first-name terms with every fan we've got - like a sort of enormous Cavern Club where everybody knew everybody else."
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Sunday, September 10, 2006
Article from 'Teen Pin-Ups', August 1966
Pattie nearly fainted – and with good reason! Oh, that George!
The street was dark and deserted. A few lamps flickered on and off in the quiet street, casting shadows on the bushes and across the sidewalks. Two people walked down the street, hand in hand. They walked slowly, close together. And very once in a while, they stopped walking and talked together for a second or two.
Those two people were George Harrison and his girlfriend at the time, Pattie Boyd. They were coming home from an evening out at one of the clubs in the area. They’d sat quietly in a corner and talked most of the evening and now George was taking Pattie home.
George told us, “I’d been dating Pattie ever since she first came on the set of ‘A Hard Day’s Night’. You might say we hit it off right away. I mean, we liked each other and liked being with each other. But for me, Pattie was just a girl who was fun to be with. I didn’t picture myself thinking really seriously about her in the beginning.”
That was in the beginning. But that night, the night George walked Pattie home from the club, his thoughts changed.
George confided, “It can be difficult to know when you’re really in love. That may sound strange but it’s really true! Sure, I knew I liked Pattie a lot. But thinking of loving her, of marrying her and settling down – that was a different story!”
George and Pattie had already talked about their feelings for each other very casually. And they’d given out statements to the press, too. But during all that time, they hadn’t really thought that deeply about what they were saying, or not saying. They denied any real serious feelings so often to newspapers, they’d almost talked each other into believing it themselves.
George told us, “I know Pattie thought I didn’t actually love her. After all, I didn’t even know it myself!”
Anyway, that night George knew it – finally and absolutely. And that night, he told her so. Not in so many words…in gestures, the way he looked at her, the way he held her hand, the way he kissed her lightly on the tip of her nose. All of these things told Pattie what words didn’t have to tell her.
George told us, “I guess I shocked Pattie. I mean, she didn’t expect me to fall in love with her! Later, she told me she’d wished it would happen. But she’d never expected it…not then, anyway.”
It’s funny how some things do happen. Pattie loved George and George loved Pattie. But neither one fully realised it. And when they finally did, it was surprising – even shocking – to both of them!
George smiled and said, “We’ve gotten over the shock, though. Both of us.”
We’d certainly say that was true, George. And it’s a pretty good thing too!
There's been a lot in the news recently about the dentist who introduced the Beatles to LSD in 1965. Here is a more in-depth article about the dentist from The Independent Online. The article also suggests that Help! was the first Beatles song inspired by LSD.
An early picture of Cynthia and her brother Charles
John, Cynthia and friends from art college
Cynthia's brother's wedding (Cynthia is next to the bride, with John behind her)
John and Cyn on the beach near Hamburg
Two nice pictures of Cynthia
With baby Julian
Cynthia and Julian
An older Cynthia
With Cilla Black in 2005.
Saturday, September 09, 2006
Thursday, September 07, 2006
Pictures of John Lennon filming "How I Won The War" in Spain, 1966. (The last 3 pictures are of John and Cynthia returning from Spain.) More coming soon, along with some information and quotes about "How I Won The War".
Article first appeared in "Star Time", October 1965.
JOHN CONFIDES IN US!
Take a peek at how the Lennons spend precious moments alone!
Everybody knows what the Chief Beatle does most of the time. His hours are filled with rehearsals, writing songs, rehearsals, writing books, keeping an eye on Ringo, setting up concerts, cutting records, making movies. It goes on and on…but what does John do in those few but precious off hours? We knew you’d be interested, so we got in touch with the Lennons and asked them –
“It’s like this, luv,” John said. “Cynthia and I realise that my being a Beatle means we have to be separated a lot. So we decided to make our moments together full ones. We try to do all the things we enjoy. For instance, if we have an afternoon free, we may pack a picnic hamper and go into the English countryside. We’ll just sit under a tree and talk or maybe I’ll make up a poem for her. Quiet, simple times like those can be especially wonderful when you’re used to moving about so much – the way we do.”
Cynthia continued, “Other times we’ll take little John to visit Aunt Mimi. She brought big John up, you know, and the baby loves her very much. We enjoy watching him laugh when she picks him up in the air. And I enjoy it doubly much because I know Aunt Mimi did the same thing to John when he was a baby. If you can imagine John being a baby!”
We all sort-of chuckled at that. And then John said-
“Another thing that Cyn and I treasure is sitting over a cup of tea or coffee early in the morning before the city is up and busy. In the still hours of dawn, we watch the sunrise and think of how lucky we are.”
(Hearing John speak this way we realise again what a wonderful guy he is!)
Cyn went on, “Then there are special times when we have something to celebrate – like an anniversary or when the boys have a record that’s Number One on the charts. After we go to the big parties, we slip away and go someplace where no one knows us. It’s getting harder to find places like that, but we have a few left. We dance and have a glass of wine. John even sings to me. It’s private – and oh, so special. Times like those are my favorites.”
John smiled and confided, “I remember one special time when Cyn and I really had a thrill. It was right after ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’ hit Number One in the States. I took Cyn by the hand and into the biggest store in London. Then I told her to pick anything she wanted – within reason, of course.”
“I really had a wonderful time,” Cyn put in. “I fulfilled one of my biggest dreams. I bought a whole new wardrobe – all in leather and suede. Knowing John, you can see why I did. They’re his two favorite fabrics. I bought skirts and vests, jumpers and hats, gloves and shoes, and even four coats! It was an extravagance, but we both feel you have to spend some of your money when you can enjoy it!”
It’s obvious that John and Cyn do enjoy themselves. And we know that you’re pleased they decided to share some of their happier, special, and very private moments with you!
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
Former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney won the Man of the Year title at the GQ magazine awards held in London.
Sir Paul was honoured for his latest album and his successful US tour.
"Paul McCartney is not only one of our greatest living legends, he's also probably the most dignified," said GQ editor Dylan Jones.
Full story at BBC News
Monday, September 04, 2006
Sunday, September 03, 2006
Last month we asked: What do you like best about John Lennon?
The results were:
His personality 35%
His politics/work for peace 24%
His voice 24%
His songs 12%
His looks 6%
A new poll for September is now available in the sidebar on the right of this page. Thanks for voting!
Saturday, September 02, 2006
Artist Candice Breitz mixes elements of Pop Idol, MTV and karaoke to make works that are uplifting, thought-provoking and — above all — fun. Alastair Sooke witnesses the making of her latest project, a tribute to John Lennon.
Article from The Telegraph
Friday, September 01, 2006
"I was terrified of meeting him because of his biting wit and musical genius. But it was like meeting an old friend - he was warm, sweet and very funny...There was no swagger - just humility and warmth. It was as if for two years the sun shone directly on me, and that heat has stayed with me forever. I loved him and will never forget."
"He is the only person in this business who is absolutely, one hundred percent sacred to me. And even if I'm doing bad things to myself, or if I'm being totally miserable or morose, or being unreasonable with people, I sometimes think, 'Oh my God, John, if there is really a big pearly gate, you're going to be standing outside of it and giving me the biggest lecture.'
"That's because he's the only person in this business that I've ever looked up to, the only person. I've met my equals. I've met people who are great, like Mick Jagger and Pete Townshend, who I admire tremendously, but they are not in the same league, I'm sorry."
"I love Lennon's work all along the line - except I didn't like Sometime in New York City very much. It had a couple of nice things. I liked Woman Is the Nigger of the World. I'm basically a fan of John's writing more than I am of Paul's - although I did like a couple of Paul's albums."
[all quotes from Elton John]