John Lennon

From ArticleWorld

John Winston Ono Lennon was born on October 9, 1940 in Liverpool, England. He has been hailed as one of the foremost musical and cultural icons of the 20th century. Best known for his work with the 1960’s rock and roll group, The Beatles, John Lennon was a stellar poet, artist, actor and author.



Lennon was born to musical parents, Alfred and Julia. Alfred left the family when John was 5 years old. Julia couldn’t care for him at the time and sent him to live with his aunt and uncle. He remained in touch with his mom until she was killed in a car accident when he was 17. Later he would pen 3 songs about her: “Julia,” “Mother” and “My Mummy’s Dead.” His son, Julian from his first marriage to Cynthia Powell (married in 1962 when she got pregnant), was named after her. John suffered from severe myopia for which he had to don corrective eyewear. He received a pair of wire-rimmed round spectacles that later became a trademark aspect of his image.

Musical roots

July 6, 1957, John’s new skiffle group, The Quarrymen, was performing at Woolton Parish Church in Liverpool. Their performance drove 13 year old Paul McCartney to seek John out backstage. After impressing John with his own musical talent on the guitar, Paul joined The Quarrymen. The bond between the two friends was further strengthened by the fact that they had both lost their mothers (Paul in 1956 and John in 1958).

The Beatles

George Harrison and Ringo Starr later joined The Quarrymen and the group changed their name to The Beatles. The differences in songwriting style between Lennon and McCartney were blatantly apparent. John’s style was more introspective and McCartney’s was a more upbeat, positive style. They counterbalanced each other perfectly.


Throughout his career, John was no stranger to controversy. He was one of the most outspoken political activists of his time. John protested the war in Vietnam, often holding “bed-in’s” for peace. He was reported to have slapped his wife, Cynthia early in their marriage and didn’t have much of a relationship with his son Julian.

John and Yoko

In 1968 he started a love affair with Yoko Ono (whom he met 2 years earlier at an art show). The two were inseparable. Ono was always present at Beatles recording sessions, which caused tension among other members of the group. Abbey Road would be the last album The Beatles recorded in 1969. The group split up soon after its September release.

Solo career

John’s solo career quickly took off. He recorded such songs as Give Peace a Chance and Instant Karma. In 1971, he released his first really successful solo album, Imagine. Lennon struggled with heroin and alcohol, but sought to clean up his act when he found out that Yoko was pregnant with their son Sean in 1975. After a brief retirement from music, he recorded his last album in 1980 entitled Double Fantasy.


On December 8, 1980, Mark David Chapman fired 5 shots at Lennon. 4 of these shots hit him in the back and shoulders, one fatally piercing John’s aorta. He was rushed to the hospital. Yet despite extensive revival efforts en route, John Lennon was pronounced dead on arrival. It was determined that he had lost 80% of his blood volume and died of shock.

In an early 1960’s interview, Lennon was asked how he expected to die. He jokingly replied: “I’ll probably be popped off by some loony.” In one of his last interviews, he commented on how he “felt he was being stalked by an obsessed fan in 1980.”