John Lennon revolutionised music in the 1960s’ and 70s’. He took rock music by storm with his band. He was a personality who dealt with life in a very thoughtprovoking way. He was none other, than John Lennon.
Lennon was a simple, charismatic man who looked at life little differently. Through his childhood, he was troubled by the question of how life worked. In school his teacher once asked him, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” “Happy”, Lennon replied.
When the teacher said that he didn’t understand the question, Lennon argued saying she didn’t understand life. John was the foremost man in the The Beatles, which was arguably the most influential rock band of the world. He left fans star struck with his brilliant lyrics and reverberating tunes.
Right from the start of The Beatles’ rather unstoppable rise to fame, John was tagged as the aggressive intellectual, of the group. Roaming around town, he would often be engaged in heavy arguments. He often made provocative statements like when he claimed that The Beatles were more popular than Jesus.
John was loved by intellectuals and his published volumes of drawings and verse had characterised him as similar to James Joyce and Lewis Carroll. He was a philosopher and supported causes through his songs. He expressed his love to the public by giving up his MBE (Member of the Excellent Order of the British) award to the Queen in protest against British involvement in the wars of Vietnam and Biafra.
Even before the Beatles broke up, John was collaborating with the ‘Plastic Ono Band’.Together they created the chart-breaking song “Cold Turkey”. It featured Eric Clapton’s howling lead guitar with lyrics about drugs and the pain of heroin withdrawal. Most of Lennon’s work ended up in the headlines and courtrooms. John was sliding towards being infamous, but he managed to keep his name around through his mantra: ‘Magic and Desperation’.
Lennon was known to use raw emotion in his songs unlike Paul who tended to weave short stories.When the Beatles broke up, John Lennon said, “Beatles was a beautiful and elegant dream. But, now it’s time to wake up.” It was a powerful statement which gave way for the mind blowing chartbuster song ‘Imagine’.
Imagine was the game-changer for Lennon as after which he decided to move to New York with Yoko Ono. By 1975, John gave up his dream and finally retired from the millennial milestone of pop music that he laid down behind him.
Lennon was the most important innovator of pop music in the 60s’ and 70s’. He explored the many layers of the human mind, politics and fantasy and struck the best areas causing his fans to bow to the intellectual heart-wrenching songs about life. He was the most ambitious, unstable and interesting band member of the Beatles. Lennon was already known as the ‘Man Who Cares’, but is also believed to be the ‘Man Who Changed the World’.
(Coordinator, Class X, Don Bosco, Park Circus)