Woman (John Lennon song)

“Woman” is a song written and performed by John Lennon from his 1980 album Double Fantasy. The track was chosen by Lennon to be the second single released from the Double Fantasy album, and it was the first Lennon single issued after his death on 8 December 1980.[1] The B-side of the single is Ono’s song “Beautiful Boys”.[1]

Lennon wrote “Woman” as an ode to his wife Yoko Ono, and to all women.[2] The track begins with Lennon whispering, “For the other half of the sky …”, a paraphrase of a Chinese proverb, once used by Mao Zedong.

Well Well Well (John Lennon song)

“Well Well Well” is a song from the album John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band by John Lennon.

The lyrics of “Well Well Well” describe mundane incidents from Lennon’s daily life with wife Yoko Ono.[1][2][3] Incidents described include eating a meal together, going for a walk, and discussing current events such as “revolution” and “women’s liberation.”[2] The song also describes the uneasiness the couple feel during these events, but which they cannot understand.[2][3] Authors Ben Urish and Ken Bielen suggest that this uneasiness is due to guilt the couple feel about being able to talk about issues but having the luxury of deciding whether or not to take action.[2]

One line of the song refers to Yoko Ono as “she looked so beautiful I could eat her.”[4] Music critic Wilfrid Mellers interprets this line as evidence of a “cannibalistic impulse” to the song.[4][5] However, critic Johnny Rogan believes it is more likely simply a reference to oral sex.[4] Early lyrics for the song used a slightly different line: “she looked so beautiful I could wee.”[3][4] This is a variation of a commonly used phrase meaning “Supremely beautiful; aesthetically pleasing.”

The melody of “Well Well Well” is pentatonic, incorporating a proper tritone.[5] In the stanzas there is little harmony other than the instruments doubling the vocal line and the thumping drum.[5] The chorus is in call and response form, and uses triadic harmony.[5]

Instrumentation for “Well Well Well” is provided by Lennon, Klaus Voorman and Ringo Starr performing as a power trio with Lennon on guitar, Voorman on bass and Starr on drums.[2] Rock journalist Paul du Noyer describes Lennon’s guitar playing as “clenched” and “grunge-like” and claims that Starr’s drumming is “some of Ringo’s toughest.”[3] Urish and Bielen suggest that Lennon’s guitar playing on the song and on Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band were an influence on punk rock.[2] Music critic Johnny Rogan comments on the “thumping bass drum” which, along with Lennon’s guitar playing makes “Well Well Well” the “heaviest and loudest” song on Plastic Ono Band.[4] Author John Blaney describes the rhythm track as “pulsing,” claiming it “echoes the beating hearts” from Lennon’s earlier song “John & Yoko” from The Wedding Album.[1]

Lennon’s singing on the song ranges between tender and ferocious.[1] In the middle section he screams the song’s title with particular abandon.[2] Authors Chip Madinger and Mark Easter call this “the most tortured-larynx singing of John’s career.[6] Mellers attributes the screams of the title phrase at the end of the song to Lennon capitulating “to the infant’s hysteria, traumatically howling for the maternal breast,” as a result of Lennon undergoing Arthur Janov’s primal therapy at the time he wrote the song.[5]

Remember (John Lennon song)

“Remember” is a 1970 song appearing on John Lennon’s first official solo album release, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band.

The song was influenced by Lennon’s primal therapy sessions with Dr Arthur Janov, and the lyrics reflect things typically remembered in therapy. The memories described are unpleasant ones, of conflict with family, authority and peers. Lennon employs his wit, mentioning how “the hero was never hung, always got away”, and parents “wishin’ for movie stardom, always playin’ a part,” instead of being honest and open.

At the end of the song, Lennon sings an excerpt from the poem Remember, Remember, The Fifth of November, then an explosion is heard. This is a reference to Guy Fawkes Night, a holiday in Britain celebrated with fireworks. In an interview with Jann Wenner, Lennon said this was part of a lengthy ad-lib and that he later decided this line ought to be the culmination of the song.[1][2] This ad-lib may refer to the nursery rhyme “Remember Remember”, also linked to Guy Fawkes Night:

“Remember, remember the fifth of November, gunpowder, treason and plot. I see no reason why gunpowder treason should ever be forgot!”

New York City (John Lennon and Yoko Ono song)

“New York City” is a song written by John Lennon that was first released on Lennon’s and Yoko Ono’s 1972 album Some Time in New York City.

“New York City” was inspired by Lennon’s move to New York City and by the people he met in the city.[1] He began writing the song soon after moving there in 1971, and a few weeks after his move he had completed the first verse, although the rest of the song was only a sketch.[1] An early version was used in Lennon’s and Ono’s film Clock, which was filmed in September 1971.[1][2] That version relied more prominently on the “que pasa” lyrics than the final version.[2] Lennon continued to expand the lyrics and make demo recordings of the song, including an acoustic version from late 1971 which was included on John Lennon Anthology.[1][2] The final version released on the album was recorded in 1972 with Elephant’s Memory on the backing instruments.[1][2]

Mother (John Lennon song)

“Mother” is a song by English musician John Lennon, first released on his 1970 album John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. An edited version of the song was issued as a single in the United States on Apple Records, on 28 December 1970.[1] The single runs about 1:41 shorter than the album due to a lack of the tolling bells intro and a quicker fadeout. The B-side features “Why” by Yoko Ono. The song peaked in the US at number 19 on the Cashbox Top 100[2] and number 43 on the Billboard Hot 100.[2]

Love (John Lennon song)

“Love” is a song written and performed by John Lennon, originally released in 1970 on the John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band album.

The song first came out on Lennon’s 1970 album John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. “Love” later appeared on the 1982 compilation The John Lennon Collection, and was released as a promotional tie-in single for the collection. The single version is a remix of the original track, which most notably differs in having the piano intro and outro (played by Phil Spector) mixed at the same volume as the rest of the song; on the original album version, these parts begin much quieter and increase in volume. B-side was “Gimme Some Truth”, but labelled as “Give Me Some Truth”.

An alternate take of the song appears on the John Lennon Anthology box set.

The picture on the sleeve for 1982 release of “Love” was taken by famed photographer Annie Leibovitz on 8 December 1980—the very day of Lennon’s murder.

Like the 1982 British issue, the original version of the song was released as a single again in October 1998 for the Japanese market only with the Japanese edition of another compilation Lennon Legend: The Very Best of John Lennon, and gained moderate success on Japan’s Oricon chart.

The song was also used as Lennon’s entry on the iTunes exclusive 4-track Beatles EP 4: John Paul George Ringo, released in 2014.

Look at Me (John Lennon song)

“Look at Me” is a song written and performed by John Lennon, from his solo debut album John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band.

Written during the extended White Album sessions of 1968, it was shelved until its release on Lennon’s 1970 debut album. A different recording of the song was later released on the John Lennon Anthology and his compilation album Acoustic.

The pattern of the song is fairly prominent throughout the song. It was built from a finger-picking technique that Lennon used while with The Beatles, including “Dear Prudence”, “Happiness Is a Warm Gun”, and “Julia”, all of which were also written during the White Album sessions. Lennon learned the song’s finger-picking guitar style (known as ‘Travis-picking’) from the Scottish musician Donovan, who was with Lennon at the time at Rishikesh, India.[1]

It’s So Hard

“It’s So Hard” is a song written and performed by John Lennon which first appeared on his 1971 album Imagine. Shortly after the album’s release, the song was released as the B-side to the single “Imagine.” In Mexico it was released on an EP with “Imagine,” “Oh My Love” and “Gimme Some Truth.”[1] In 1986, a live performance from 30 August 1972 was released on Lennon’s live album Live in New York City.

According to author John Blaney, the lyrics of “It’s So Hard” represent a summary of Lennon’s struggle with life problems.[2] The lyrics describe one of Lennon’s attitudes toward life, complaining about difficulties and the need to eat and love, noting that sometimes things get so difficult he wants to stop trying.[3] He only finds solace with his lover.[2][3] Author Andrew Grant Jackson interprets the song as demonstrating the difficulty in achieving the utopia vision in his song “Imagine,” which was released as the A-side of the single including “It’s So Hard,” due to the drudgery of everyday life.[4] The song incorporates double entendres such as “going down,” which is used to mean “giving up” early in the song, but refers to oral sex later in the song.[3] Even the title phrase “it’s so hard” serves as a sexual double entendre when used in the portion of the song describing when the singer is with his lover and things are good.[4]

“It’s So Hard” is a hard rocking blues song.[2][3] Music critic Wilfrid Mellers actually considers the vocal line to be based on gospel and soul music, but states that the song’s use of sharpened fourths and false relations gives it a “harsh rock-bottom reality comparable with that of genuine, primitive blues.[5] The primary instruments are just Lennon on guitar, Klaus Voormann on bass and Jim Gordon on drums.[2] In addition, the instrumentals include strings played by the Flux Fiddlers and a saxophone solo played by King Curtis.[2]

Imagine (John Lennon song)

“Imagine” is a song written and performed by the English musician John Lennon. The best-selling single of his solo career, its lyrics encourage the listener to imagine a world at peace without the barriers of borders or the divisions of religion and nationality, and to consider the possibility that the focus of humanity should be living a life unattached to material possessions.

Lennon and Yoko Ono co-produced the song and album of the same name with Phil Spector. Recording began at Lennon’s home studio at Tittenhurst Park, England, in May 1971, with final overdubs taking place at the Record Plant, in New York City, during July. One month after the September release of the LP, Lennon released “Imagine” as a single in the United States; the song peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 and the LP reached number one on the UK chart in November, later becoming the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed album of Lennon’s solo career. Although not originally released as a single in the United Kingdom, it was released in 1975 to promote a compilation LP and it reached number six in the chart that year. The song has since sold more than 1.6 million copies in the UK; it reached number one following Lennon’s murder in December 1980. In 1985, Central Park memorialized a portion of the park with a mosaic that reads “Imagine” in honor of Lennon.[1]

BMI named “Imagine” one of the 100 most-performed songs of the 20th century. The song ranked number 30 on the Recording Industry Association of America’s list of the 365 Songs of the Century bearing the most historical significance. It earned a Grammy Hall of Fame Award and an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. A UK survey conducted by the Guinness World Records British Hit Singles Book named it the second best single of all time, while Rolling Stone ranked it number three in their list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”. Since 2005, event organisers have played it just before the New Year’s Times Square Ball drops in New York City. Dozens of artists have performed or recorded versions of “Imagine”, including Madonna, Stevie Wonder, Joan Baez, Elton John and Diana Ross. Emeli Sandé recorded a cover for the BBC to use during the end credits montage at the close of the 2012 Summer Olympics coverage in August 2012. “Imagine” subsequently re-entered the UK Top 40, reaching number 18.

I’m Losing You (John Lennon song)

“I’m Losing You” is a song written by John Lennon and released on his 1980 album Double Fantasy. It was completed in Bermuda in June 1980, after Lennon failed at an attempted telephone call to Yoko Ono. The song is also available on the 1982 compilation The John Lennon Collection, the 1998 boxset John Lennon Anthology, the one disc compilation Wonsaponatime, the 2005 two disc compilation Working Class Hero: The Definitive Lennon and in 2010 for the Gimme Some Truth album. The song was also featured in the 2005 musical Lennon.

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