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john lennon :: Blog

Today in Rock: John Lennon is Born

Friday, October 7: 3:30 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
John Lennon (October 9, 1940 – December 8, 1980)

As the most daring and outspoken of the four Beatles, John Lennon helped shape the agenda of the Sixties - socially and politically, no less than musically. As a solo artist, he made music that alternately disturbed and soothed, provoked and sought community. As a human being, he served as an exemplar of honesty in his art and life. Lennon didn’t invent rock and roll, nor did he embody it as toweringly as figures like Elvis Presley and Little Richard, but he did more than anyone else to shake it up, move it forward and instill it with a conscience. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.

As Jann Wenner wrote in the foreword to a collection of writings entitled The Ballad of John and Yoko, “Of the many things that will be long remembered about John Lennon - his genius as a musician and singer, his wit and literary swiftness, his social intuition and leadership - among the most haunting was the stark, unembarrassed commitment of his life, his work and his undernourished frame to truth, to peace and to humanity.”

Born on October 9, 1940, during the Nazi bombing of Britain, Lennon was given ...


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Thirty years later: Remembering John Lennon

Wednesday, December 8: 10:08 a.m.
Posted by Jim Henke

It’s hard to believe that it has been 30 years since John Lennon was assassinated outside of his apartment in New York City. At the time, I was running Rolling Stone magazine’s bureau in Los Angeles. I had just gotten into my car to drive home from work when a news bulletin came on the radio stating that John Lennon had been murdered. How could this happen? The world was shocked. We simply could not believe what we were hearing on the news. Here was a man who worked so hard to bring peace and love to the world, and someone kills him. We immediately dropped what we were doing at Rolling Stone, so we could put together a special issue about John. In the years since, I have been fortunate to get to know Yoko Ono, and she has been very generous to the Hall of Fame. In 2000, we did a major exhibit about John here at the Museum. Then, when we had our Hall of Fame Annex in New York, we did a big exhibit about John’s years in New York. We also have several of John’s things – his Sgt. Pepper uniform, lyric ...


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