John Lennon: The Smart Beatle “You, you may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one I hope someday you’ll join us and the world will be as one,” is the chorus of Imagine, one of the most famous John Lennon songs. John Winston Ono Lennon was a singer, songwriter, artist and a hero in the eyes of the many people that belonged to the world of the hippies during the 1960s through the 1980s. John Lennon was part of the music group the Beatles; who sang about everything from world peace to young love and even drugs. He also became a solo artist after the Beatles split up and created a sound of his own.
He earned the love and admiration of his generation by creating a huge body of work that inspired and led people (John Lennon). However, he was not a god in any way; he had his flaws just like any other person. John Lennon suffered through a rough childhood, faced a challenging, yet exciting adulthood and would never get a chance to experience his manhood. As a child, John Lennon was defiant, determined and extremely intelligent. John Lennon was born on October 09, 1940 during the Nazi bombing of Britain (“John Lennon Biography”). John was born to Alfred Lennon and Julia Stanley Lennon.
They separated when he was a baby, but were never officially divorced. He did not see his father from the age of four, until after he became famous. After Alfred and Julia separated, Julia started a new relationship with John “Bobby” Dykins. When the social services discovered that young John was sharing a bed with Julia and her new partner, it was agreed that John would move in with Mimi Smith, Julia’s sister (Coleman 88-89). John was raised in Woolton, Liverpool by his Aunt Mimi (63). At the age of four he was taught to read and write by his Uncle George, later came to have a passion for books (99).
John attended Dovedale Primary School where he did well in all of his classes. John excelled in art but had a weakness in math.. At the age of eleven John was accepted into Quarry Bank High School after passing an eleven-plus exam (104,106). While attending Quarry Bank High School, John became less responsible. John started failing to pay attention in class, would skip lessons, started to smoke and began to swear (107-108). John attended Liverpool College of Art and was kicked out by the age of nineteen for disorderliness. All these things would not be enough to prepare him for what he was to encounter as a growing adult.
During his adulthood, John became more daring, less responsible and was found caught up in the rush of fame. At the age of sixteen, John became a fan of Elvis Presley, who at the time was just being discovered. Elvis became the inspiration behind the band that John formed called the “Quarry Men”, named after his school (“John Lennon biography”). Shortly after forming the band, John met Paul McCartney and a friendship based solely on music was formed. After playing their first gig, the band began to gain momentum and decided it was time for a new name (194).
As the band started to throw around names such as Long John Silver, one of the band members came up with the name the Beetles. John would later change the name to the Beatles, to incorporate the word ‘beat’ which was a popular word used to define the unique bands that originated from Liverpool (195-196). After the Beatles were discovered by Brian Epstein in 1961 at the Cavern Club, they released their first single, Love Me Do in October 1962 and it peaked on the British charts at number 17. The Beatles became the first band to break out in the United States, creating the Beatlemania.
After Beatlemania started to lose the magic that is possessed from the start, the band split up. After an extended break, the band returned to the studio to expand their experimental with drug-influenced exotic instrumentation/lyrics and tape abstractions. The first sample was the single Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever, followed up by Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, still considered by many to be the greatest rock album ever (“John Lennon Biography”). John never did get to experience his manhood, but he did get to experience many other things like marriage, divorce and having kids.
The first woman he married was his college friend Cynthia Powell. Cynthia became his wife during Beatlemania and had their son during that time too. On April 8, 1963 their son John Charles Julian Lennon was born (Coleman 261). John Lennon did no want to get married, but in order to protect Cynthia and the child he decided that marriage was the best option (264). Cynthia Powell said, “I don’t think that we’d have been married if I hadn’t become pregnant. He wasn’t the sort at the age of twenty- one to say: “Will you marry me? It was all so immediate that we hardy realized the seriousness of it all: making love, getting pregnant, getting married. ” (qtd. in Coleman 263). After meeting Yoko Ono at one of her art showings in 1966, John and her started to have an affair. As they got more and more serious John finally had the courage to tell Cynthia what was going on (422). Though they tried to work through this hard time, John finally decided to end their marriage in 1968 (440). John and Yoko were married on March 20, 1969 (John Lennon). They had a son, Sean Lennon Ono, in 1975.
John’s second marriage ended on December 8, 1980 when he was assassinated by an enraged fan outside of his hotel (John Lennon Biography). After the death of John Lennon his record sales soared and he continued to be admired by his generation (John Lennon). On December 14, 1980, a ten-minute silent vigil in John’s honour was observed around the world at 2:00 P. M. E. S. T. (Coleman 724). John left behind a legacy of music that has reached generation after generation. John Lennon suffered through a rough childhood, faced a challenging, yet exciting adulthood and would never get a chance to experience his manhood.
As a child, John was raised by his Aunt Mimi after his parents were divorced, never saw his father until he became famous and was seventeen when he lost his mother after she was hit by a car. During his adulthood he formed a band, began a friendship with Paul McCartney and his renamed band, the Beatles were discovered by Brian Epstein. John never did get to experience his manhood, but he did get to experience many other things like marriage, divorce and having kids. He married, divorced and had a child with Cynthia Powell. Then he married and had a child with Yoko Ono and during their marriage he was assassinated by an enraged fan.
John left behind a legacy of music that has reached generation after generation. “You, you may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one I hope someday you’ll join us and the world will be as one,” is the chorus of Imagine, one of the most famous John Lennon songs. Works Cited Coleman, Ray. Lennon: the definitive biography. USA: HarperCollins Publishers, 1985. Print. “John Lennon Biography. ” The Rock and Roll Hall of fame and museum. Web. 09. Aug. 2012 “John Lennon. ” 2012. Biography. com 2012. Biography. com 10 Aug 2012