DECEMBER 8


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  1. #1

    DECEMBER 8




    I think for most of us here, or at least for many of us, September 11 is always the day when you think of your own mortality, as the day innocence was lost (though maybe we never were, in fact, innocent), the day when all hope seemed to be lost. Others will point to November 22, the day JFK was shot.

    But for me, and maybe a scant few Beatles fans, it will always be December 8. What happened on that Monday night in 1980 is so seared into my mind, I can still find myself reliving it at night sometimes.

    It was an ordinary night really, a little warmer than usual for a December night. I was relaxing in bed after a day of work, watching Monday Night Football when a news scrawl came in with a bulletin. IN NEW YORK, FORMER BEATTIE- Okay, stop there, what’s a Beattie? JOHN LENNON- Okay, the goof misspelled Beatle, okay. WAS SHOT OUTSIDE HIS NEW YORK APARTMENT- wtf? CONDITION UNKNOWN, STAY TUNED FOR DETAILS.

    Now, I’m thinking, who the Hell did Lennon piss off this time? How bad was he shot? Was he going to be okay?

    By chance I was able to find a copy of the actual MNF broadcast on Youtube, coming from Baltimore of all places. And it was exactly ten minutes to the second after the scrawl when Cosell announced that Lennon was DEAD ON ARRIVAL. Needless to say, I was stunned. This was much more surreal than anything I had experienced in my not quite nineteen years.

    For weeks on end, I tried to figure out how to accept what had happened. Lennon was all over the radio of course, first constantly and commercial free for about two days, then regularly as Double Fantasy shot straight up the charts. It seemed to open a period of violence in 1981 that saw President Reagan, then The Pope, get shot and, finally, with the assassination of Anwar Sadat. It’s not hard for me to wonder if the Lennon assassination, and it was an assassination, started the whole mad trend.

    So, even now, I’m not over it, and I probably never will be. I’m always sensitive anytime someone in the rock field dies whether it be Marvin Gaye, Roy Orbison, Kurt Cobain, Jerry Garcia, George Harrison, Amy Winehouse, or Michael Jackson. In some cases, I can tell you exactly where I was when someone of their stature died. I even predicted how I’d find out about George Harrison, who was dying of cancer. And, sure enough, I turned on the TV and there it was at the bottom of the screen- George Harrison 1943-2001.

    Anyway, those are some of my thoughts of December 8. What are your thoughts? Is there someone that affected you in a way you didn’t expect? I’m sure there are those who were equally affected by Elvis for example or even Jerry Garcia (lots of deadheads out there).


    In the meantime…


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  2. #2
    The following day me and a school mate went down to Mathew Street and got arrested for spraying messages all about..then it was a derilict street and a flat car park space was were the cavern club use to be..but Eric's nightclub was open there which is on a par with the cavern as a music venue then before a Christian police chief revoked it's licence...
    The only one who can heal you is you.




  3. #3
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    Depends if you were a Beatle/Lennon fan. Music had changed so much in those 10 years and he hadn't done much for 5 years or more.

    I do remember him doing interviews about his latest album at the time. I think the last one was with a dj called Richard Skinner?

    If he had lived would he have just been forgotten into music history as time moved on? Music was entering another change of New Wave/Romantics in the UK when he died.

    Maybe he would have become unbearable with his endless lectures like the 'wannabe' from Dublin?

    Funny old world.

  4. #4
    There are, unfortunately, some parallels between Lennon and Bono, particularly if you look at some of Lennon's stances in the early seventies. He may very well have fallen into that trap had he lived.

    I don't think he would have been forgotten though. I mean, have you forgotten Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Paul McCartney? Some artists are just timeless even if they are considered 'too old for rock n roll.' No, he wouldn't have been deified the way he was in death, but I don't think his impact, especially with the Beatles, would have changed all that much.


    Was his last interview with King Biscuit? I think it was a radio interview if I remember.
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    I was referring to Uk where he was promoting his album amongst other things just before his return to New York.

    When i meant forgotten. I meant 'they' meaning the Beatles. As a lot of 60's bands where until Youtube. To those who weren't there they mean nothing much. McCartney's second wife is supposed to not care for them at all and that was before the fall out. Such was the twenty plus year age difference in music generations as an example.

  6. #6
    I think the Beatles will always be in the public conscience much like Beethoven or Bach or Duke Ellington. I don't think they'll forget artists like Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Bob Dylan, or the Rolling Stones either. I think their impact on music was so great, it goes beyond how many young kids are into an artist today. I doubt any of us were racing home to listen to a Beethoven record when we were kids but we certainly knew his fifth symphony. There will always be music lovers who want to hear a revered artist, no matter how old.
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  7. #7
    This was a lovely tribute. It's amazing how fully an artist can hold you, and when they're snatched away as Lennon was, it's no wonder we get worked up.

    The only strong reaction I had to something like this was Gord Downie, but I already detailed that in the Tragically Hip thread. I don't recall anything about the day he died, though. I likely heard about it on the radio or Facebook. But I do remember feeling so gutted that I wrote my own little tribute to the man, which I lost almost immediately.
    I sprayed spot remover on my dog and now he's gone. - S. Wright.

  8. #8
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    I'm currently reading the biography Being John Lennon. The thing about the Beatles' music is, it still holds up after, what over fifty years? It still sounds fresh because for the most part, it was four (plus George Martin) extremely talented musicians having fun creating music. From the start, they had fun on stage playing--even before they became good musicians, but they were popular in part due to their stage presence and how they interacted with the audiences. They were fun to watch because they were having fun, and emotions are contagious.

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