New Lennon book collects John interviews.

So sorry folks for the lack of regular updates since the New Year, but things have been busy around here.  We have been playing with redesigning the blog and making some changes to things around here.  Please bear with me as I make some changes, and bring in some really new and exciting content!

We are looking at more ways of making the blog even more active for 2009 , and should unveil a great redesign in the coming week(s).  For now, though updates will be a bit spotty.

For now though it looks like a new John Lennon title is collecting some interviews from the late-great legend. We look forward to hearing more details about it in the near future. It looks promising.  Any new Lennon titles is always promising.

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Here’s what we’ve read.

New Book Collects John Lennon’s Essential Interviews

JOHN LENNON: The Essential Interviews collects the pop music legend’s most candid and inspirational interactions with the media. Available for advanced order and immediate delivery from Rock Reader Books here: (http://www.lulu.com/content/5363419), this exciting new book – which is also now available for download – will be formally released March 3, 2009 through traditional and online book retailers.

Beginning in the sensational heyday of the Beatles, The Essential Interviews traces Lennon’s personal and creative evolution over the span of the next fifteen years up until his tragic murder in December 1980. Allowing the iconic musician to tell his own story, JOHN LENNON: The Essential Interviews finds the genius behind most of the Beatles best songs, delivering the memorable, newsworthy sentiments that captivated the media and record buying public alike.

Compiled by pop music journalist John D. Luerssen specifically for Rock Reader Books,

this project offers direct perspective from Lennon on how the following legendary sentiments took shape:

“Part of me suspects that I’m a loser, and the other part of me thinks I’m God Almighty.”

“Music is everybody’s possession. It’s only publishers who think that people own it.”

“Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.”

“If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace.”

Thanks for John

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Imagine: Lennon in TV ad 28 years after his death + VIDEO.

It’s all a little outrageous don’t you think?  I mean I know that they have revived Elvis, Roy Orbison,  and Frank Sinatra, but I don’t they’ve ever done aything truly like this.  I have never seen a dead celebrity used to promote a movement. Personally, I think this ad is in truly poor taste.

Somehow, I just feel uncomfortable about all of this.  I guess if Yoko gives her blessing, then it’s OK.  Somehow I just don’t think I can justify it that’s all.  The more times I watch it, the sicker to my stomach I get actually.

Plus, you’d think they’d find a guy to do a better voice imitation. 

  • What are your thoughts on this ad?  See it below. 

Here’s what we’ve read.

Imagine, John Lennon makes a television commercial for charity — 28 years after his death.

Through the use of digital technology, the former Beatle urges people across the United States to support a campaign by “One Laptop per Child” to deliver tough, solar-powered XO laptop computers to the world’s poorest children.

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Inebriated Lennon tape grab 30k at auction with AUDIO.

John Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono, seen here in 1969 at a Paris Flea Market.

No this may not have been John Lennon’s finest hour, but it certainly is a fun listen.  If you haven’t heard any of the bootleg or outtakes from John’s fabled “lost weekend” then you me dear friends are in for a fun inebriated ride.  I personally find the drunken ramblings of an ex-Beatle playing the moldy oldies quite hillarious.  You have to give John credit for trying to get through these.  Ahh to have been a fly on the wall.  The “lost weekend” outtakes are some of my favorites out there.

Plus, it’s really funny to hear John sing about nipples.  Enjoy!  The tape has been leaked onto youtube in both stereo and mono.  To those of you who are fans of the Lost Lennon radio tapes show this tape should sound a little familiar.

John Lennon – Just Because (mono)

Here’s what we’ve read.

Maybe it wasn’t John Lennon’s best musical effort, but a tape of an apparently inebriated Lennon warbling a cover of Lloyd Price’s “Just Because” brought a sobering $30,000 at auction Sunday in Los Angeles.

John Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono, seen here in 1969 at a Paris Flea Market.

VIDEO: “Here Today.”

Paul McCartney remembers his friend and partner through the best way he knows how.  John we miss you.

Here Today” – Live at the Paris Olympia, 22/10/07.

The keeper of Lennon’s artistic flame.

I have to give Yoko Ono a lot of credit. If I were in her shoes I don’t know that I could keep it up.   Being the keeper of the Lennon legacy has to be so so difficult.  I mean, afterall, she has her own artistic endeavors and projects yet she is able to find a fine balance between her own projects and those that involve her dearly departed John. I really appreciate the fact that she has continued John’s work for peace through art.  If Lennon were alive today, he’d still be willing to be an artist for peace even moreso now.

It takes some courage to do the things that Yoko has done for John Lennon fans over the years.  I mean, we all have been treated to a wonderful radio show that highlighted gems from the Lennon vaults.  We were afforded a beautiful boxed set of outtake material from every facet of John’s solo career. Fans have been obliged with remastered solo-Lennon albums.  Yes, there’s been grumbling over artwork and remixed tracks, but at least they are out there for us to enjoy.  These projects don’t even begin to scrape the surface of any Beatle-related work that’s been done since John’s murder.  Without Yoko at the helm of John’s legacy I don’t believe that we would have gotten such good products, and such care with Lennon’s life work.

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If anything, I think Yoko puts too much effort and care into her late husband’s work.  She is very guarded about the Lennon legacy, with some reason.  She has put out some weird things over the year, but c’mon people it’s Yoko afterall.  It comes with the territory.  We should expect a little bizarre, and arty with our dose of Lennon rock and roll.  I’m thankful that is Yoko steering the Lennon ship.  Without Yoko it would definitely lose that sense intimacy and presence.

Here’s what we’ve read.

In the late 1960s when controversy swirled around them like a cyclone, John Lennon said of his wife Yoko Ono, “Everyone knows who she is, but nobody knows what she does”.

Since his murder 28 years ago this month, it has become clear what Ono does: she is the keeper of his flame; the one who believes in Lennon’s genius as much as he did, and is determined to have others acknowledge it too. She ensures his name, art and political beliefs are kept alive, and with equal energy pursues her own art career.

Whether it be licensing Lennon’s music and image for use in advertisements or commercial products, allowing Ben & Jerry to create an ice-cream flavour (Imagine Whirled Peace) with his signature on the tub, or releasing new pieces of his art annually for inclusion in touring exhibitions, Ono has been tireless.

As an associate observed recently, Ono is “not at all a lady of leisure”. And hard to pin down.

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Japan keeps Lennon’s memory alive.

Tribute concerts are tricky beasts.  Most of the time they can be quite moving, but they turn into a wank fest for the artists involved. Somehow, I just don’t see John taking part in one himself during his lifetime.  It just wasn’t his style.  I find it a bit odd that there have been so many for him.  I know we are simply celebrating a songwriter’s life through song, and celebrating his life’s work.  Lennon, though, was larger than that.  It’s not like he was just Elvis or Sinatra.  It was John Lennon.

Artist, Beatle, peace activist, singer, rocker…and so much more.  Maybe that’s why these tributes keep popping up.  I know I am contradicting myself, but it’s just so hard to wrap John’s legacy in a neat little bow.  He was so much larger than life.  It’s good to keep the legacy alive, but there are just so many ways to remember the man.  It’s hard to put into words even now.

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Here’s what we’ve read.

John Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono is marking the 28th anniversary of the musician’s death by playing a special memorial concert in Tokyo.

Japan is one country where John Lennon’s memory is kept very much alive. Beatlemania has never really died.

Every night in Tokyo, bands dressed as John, Paul, George and Ringo faithfully reproduce their sound.

Even though many of the musicians would struggle to hold a conversation in English, they know every word of the entire Beatles songbook.

Fans of all ages sing along, but only the older generation can remember the momentous occasion when the Beatles performed in Japan.

They played Tokyo’s Budokan Arena for five nights in the summer of 1966, with each show lasting just thirty minutes.

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Why Sir Paul McCartney is willing to risk it all in Israel.

Paul McCartney is putting his money where his mouth is with his upcoming concert in Israel.  I personally think it’s a bit looney.  McCartney is defying reports that he will be killed at an upcoming show promoting peace and friendship, and going on with the show. 

I can’t help but think what his collaborator, friend, and fellow peace advocate John Lennon would say.  Somehow, I don’t see John jumping directly into the fire like that, and really, really putting himself on the line like that if the reports of extremists wanting his head are really true.  It simply wasn’t John’s style do to things like that.  John was more comfortable being a clown for peace rather than a martyr for a cause. 

Geoff Baker, Paul’s former publicist, has written a nice piece at the UK Daily Mail that explains the importance and impact on Paul that this concert will really hold.  Paul also hopes that this concert will truly spread the message of peace, love, and friendship.

The show Thursday will be interesting, and we’ll all have to see how the show goes down. I personally think it will be a truly awesome celebration.  If anyone can usher in a moment of peace and brotherhood it’s Paul.