From our distant perch in the twenty-first century, the lates mega-celebrity of John Lennon and Yoko Ono should seem rather quaint in comparison to, say, the moveable feasts of decadent banality brought to us by reality TV stars. By the fall ofJohn and Yoko had emerged as the most notorious couple on the planet. To put things in a more expansive context: their shared celebrity came into being in the wake of one of the most dour and altogether tragic news cycles on record.
John Lennon was not among his fans. Capp insulted Yoko, saying to John, "Good God, you've gotta live with that? It had been a long, twisted journey to the hotel room in Montreal, starting with a difficult childhood in New Haven.
In choosing photos for this blog, I usually shy away from really famous ones Iwo Jima, the Time Square Kiss because the chances are that most people not only have seen them but also know the backstories behind them some probably even better than I do. The picture of John Lennon and Yoko Ono lying on the floor together a few hours before he was murdered was ten years in the making. The first picture I took of John was my first important assignment from Rolling Stonein Jann Wenner was going to New York to interview him, and I persuaded Jann that I should come too, mostly by explaining that I would be cheaper than anyone else.
There are many versions of what went down at Keith Moon's 20th birthday party but they all involve the Who drummer ending up without pants. We know the bacchanal took place at the Holiday Inn in Flint, Michigan, and that Moon, fleeing sheriff's deputies, slipped on some birthday cake and chipped his tooth. As for the rest?
In the mids Yoko started to receive the artistic recognition she had longed for. Conceptual Art was already a fact and she was admired by the new generations as a pioneer. In Cut Piece, Yoko seated over her legs, undaunted, allows and encourages the audience to cut her fine suit with a pair of scissors.
I love her and she deserves every bit of it! All of you Beatles fans who still say she broke up the Beatles are either really uneducated, or just in denial. Hi, welcome to my Ted Talk.
The image of Paul, singing from the rooftop in the final 10 minutes, had set him off. Jann Wenner shifted in his seat. John and Yoko were deep into primal-scream therapy, their emotions raw and close to the surface, and the image of a bearded Paul McCartney singing from the rooftop of Apple Records, against a cold London wind, was too much to bear.
Long before a body-positive movement really existed, the couple tried to present themselves as simply 'two slightly overweight ex-junkies'. U nfinished Music No 1: Two Virginsreleased 50 years ago this month, is only for the most ardent Beatles fans. The first of three experimental albums that John Lennon and Yoko Ono recorded centred around birdsong, garbled shrieking, amplifier feedback, tape loops and distorted instrumentation.
Years ago, before American society had achieved full pornofication, the raciest image in a teenager's room might be an album cover. And many musicians and record-company art departments had figured out that an easy way to goose sales was to slap a photo of a half-naked girl on the cover, until the borderline between "sexy" and "sexist" was obliterated. The album cover that made a generation salivate at the notion of licking away a truckload of whipped cream to reveal what was underneath.