I wonder what kind of music we’d be hearing from John Lennon if he were still alive today.
There have been many people taken from us too soon. I’m sure some of us think about what those people would be doing now had they lived. Think about all the musicians who were taken from us too early. What would we be hearing today from Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain, Ritchie Valens, Buddy Holly, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Jim Croce, Harry Chapin, Bob Marley, Elvis Presley, and so many others?
John Lennon was born on October 9, 1940 in Liverpool, England. I don’t think he had a great childhood which worked out well for all of us. I truly believe that people who have to go through hardships and great challenges are much more creative. As the great Charlie Parker once said, “If you don’t live it, it won’t come out your horn”. Same kind of thing with teachers. The best teachers aren’t necessarily the ones who know the subject matter the best. The best teachers are those who have been through the most crap in their life. They see things with the kids that others don’t see. The wounded recognize the wounded.
One of John Lennon’s most memorable songs is Imagine. The lyrics and music are simple but very powerful. The second and third verse say so much today, almost 50 years after the release of the song. I suspect those lyrics will be just as powerful in another 50 years.
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world
I admired Lennon for being so outspoken. He said what he felt and was brutally honest. Nothing wrong with that. “The Beatles are more popular than Jesus.” I think many people picture Lennon with this halo over his head when in fact he was far from perfect. He did so much good for the world with his activities for peace that any less than perfect behavior seems to have been minimized.
Everyone in the United States remembers where they were when they heard about John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Everyone in the world remembers where they were when they heard about John Lennon’s death. I was laying on the floor in the living room doing homework and watching Monday Night Football (Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots) when I saw the info flash across the bottom of the screen. I was feeling somewhat optimistic because the scrolling text said Lennon had been taken by ambulance to the hospital. He was still alive. There was still hope. It was moments later when Howard Cosell announced his death and, with that distinct voice and speech pattern, said Dead….On….Arrival.
What kind of music would John Lennon be making today at 78 years of age? What would he think of our world today? How would he deal with our current president? Would he be on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram? What charities would he be involved in? Would he still be hanging out with Yoko? What kind of relationship would he have with his sons? Before George Harrison’s death, would there have been a Beatles reunion? What would he think about the economy? The wars? The school shootings? Kanye West? Justin Bieber?
Mark David Chapman may have taken John Lennon’s life that cold Monday night on December 8, 1980, but he did not take his legacy.
What would today be like with John Lennon still in our world? Imagine.