John Lennon

The folloing article appeared in "Beatles Color Pinup Album" which is a publication of the editors of Teen Screen magazine. This article is from the year 1964.

John Lennon is the chief Beatle!
Without him, there would be no Beatles! John was the one who organized the group and gave them their tag-one that has become in the past year, the most important word in the English vocabulary.
In 1940, October 9, John Winston Lennon was born in Liverpool. He grew to be 5'11" tall, with brown hair and brown eyes.
As a child, he lived an uninterrupted, calm life. John never felt desperately sad or unusually happy. Suddenly before his fourteenth birthday, that calm was shattered when his mother died!
"Only those who have gone through such an experience can realize the tragedy. It is too great a sorrow to publicize, and I dislike talking about it! I can only hope everyone with two living parents can appreciate them."
"Though Mum was taken away, I received something precious! In return, my Auntie Mimi took me to live with her. I realize I am fortunate because Auntie is the greatest! When I am away from home, sometimes I think about her little house with the frilly curtains, and the old apple tree in the garden."
Life and growing up in Liverpool is just like any other place in the world. Though jobs are not easy to come by, we somehow could always manage. It isn't the most beautiful city to look at! But it's got atmosphere.
After I left Dovedale Primary and Quarry Bank Grammer, through with reading, writing and 'rithmetic, I entered the Liverpool College of Art. I fail miserably in math and science, history I feld cold. Art was by far my favorite. Anyway, at 14 and15, who is interested in the Bolingbroke and Richard II burn-up? Who cares how many x's will solve an algebra problem? My main interest was music, girls and cigarettes. In that precise order!!!
I knew George only by sight at Dovedale. In Primary school, three years is a huge gap when one is young, as we were.
While I was still in Quarry Bank Grammer, George went on to the Liverpool Institute. Several years later, Paul and I started teaching ourselves guitar. We'd rush through tea each night after school, we'd meet and practice our act. At last we thought we were good enough to go on an audition. We went on an audition and were booked at Reading as the Nurk Twins.
We yelled until we were potty with joy. However, only a small proportion of Reading went batty over us, this is what started our dream of a career in show business! Before this, we hadn't altogether dared to think of one.
The Nurk Twins didn't completely catch on! Paul and I decided to expand. Perhaps we would do better with a larger group! Finally we hit up on a new sound, a new beat was to come! Well, the beginnings of GEAR!
By this time, George had joined us. We began to do well as semi-pro. (Stuart Sutcliffe, a great pal who was also with us, is now dead.) At last...came the big break! An offer from the Star Club in Hamburg. Everyone who is anybody in Liverpool has played this super-Cavern.
George wasted no time while in Germany! Almost immediately, he picked up the German language and showed great interest in the frauleins! Paul's eyes never stopped flashing! My ideas were different.
My love was in Liverpool. She and I met one day, and had suddenly fallen in love! Later, we married. I love her. As I am away such a lot, Mrs. Lennon lives with Auntie Mimi. I've this old-fashioned idea: marriage is a private thing, not to be made public. Forgive me and understand. I must feel one needs must respect his privacy to a certain degree.
To carry on about the Star Club, we had been there several times. One of those times another group was on the bill. We were taken by the style of the drummer...not only was he the greatest drummer we'd ever seen, he possessed a special feel he emoted through his rythm. His name was Ringo. Ringo Starr!!!
We were not able to speak with him until months later in Liverpool. Then we met him. Stuart Suttcliffe decided to stay in Germany permanently. Indeed, it was a sad blow when we were told of his sudden death! While in Germany, we thought up the name Beatles. But they couldn't pronounce it and thus, we were called "the Beat Boys." By then; Paul, Ringo, George and I were the Beatles.
Today, we are still the Beatles! We'll fizzle out one day, I think this is inevitable. But we'll have a lot of fun. We hope to earn enough money to buy out New York and England. Then we'll just tow them down to the equator! I'm certain people who don't like us now, will love us then. And then of course, the others will be able to date the native girls.
Like most human beings, we have little rows. But we are cooperative group. No laws are laid down. People kept asking which of us was the leader? We replied, "nobody"! They said, "you must have a boss!" The others said to me; 'well, you've started this fluke, you're the leader!' that was that!
I do not hesitate to keep my private life separate from this business. However, girls make pilgrimmages to my home in Liverpool when I live with my family. I want my wife to lead a normal life and not be pestered day and night because she is married to one of the Beatles.
Thick heads are mox nix! I do not care to associate with them. Traditional jazz is a bore.
Steak, chips, jelly, curries, painting, modern jazz, cats, suede and leather clothing catch my fancy. I love music and reading books. Juliette Greco, Marlon Brando, Brigette Bardot, Peter Sellers, Anthony Quinn and Kay Starr rank among my favorites. The Shirelles, Little Richard, The Miracles, Elvis Presley, and intelligent blondes I can appreciate!
John plays the rhythm guitar and harmonica. He loves to sing and it his remarkable falsetto voice which lends effect on the group's best-selling records.
"Many people think him the oldest Beatle of the lot, it isn't true!" quips George.
Paul thinks, "The most important day in my life is the day I met John!"
"I never met him at all...why doesn't someone introduce us?" Ringo asks.
The result of John's attempt at show business is what is now universally known as Beatlemania! As Newsweek put it, "the sound of their music is one of the most persistent noises heard over England since the air-raid sirens were dismantled." Their popularity reaches the pinnacle, when in November, at the request of the Royal family, The Beatles starred in the annual command performance at the Prince of Wales theatre. It was an affair to remember!
The Queen Mother found them young, fresh, and vital! The Beatles, who have literally rocked the rolled their way to the Crown, take the whole thing stride. Chief Beatle John told the ladies in the cheaper seats clap, the rest of you rattle your jewels."
Paul and I are great friends. We write all the songs. But for some reason, when we are at our busiest, someone wants us to write a song in a hurry! This is not our relaxation! Though when write your own material, it is more a part of you. We wrote, Bad To Me in the back of a van that had a hard floor, no windows, pitch darkness all around the bumps of the roads. Only one guitar between us, a pen and paper we couldn't see to us.
We were such panic that night we wrote She Loves You, we had to shut out our surroundings. As we do sometimes when we are in a hurry to write a song!
One night we had just arrived in Newcastle after a tour that tired us all out! Paul could think of nothing but a good night's sleep, and I could not keep my eyes open! Brian Epstein, our manager called. "You do know you're making your next single in three days, and between then and now you haven't got a free hour?"
"I hate to stop you sleeping," Brian went on. "But I presume you have written the song you are about to record?"
"Written it?" John sat up with a bolt of lightning speed, "Written it? Heck no!" Brian made a hasty departure with, "good night, sleep well." Six hours in which to write a hit! And a number one at that. Paul ordered some coffee, while I woke myself up with a splash of cold water on the face. Paul handed me the guitar.
She loves...she loves who? Me? You? Him? She loves you! After we had the title, all else was easy. But no matter how low we played, or how low we sang, we disturbed the quiet of the night.

Email Sarah

Return to Vintage Articles & Interviews


Hosted by www.Geocities.ws