Today is December 8, 2017. It was December 8, 1980, when the world lost one of its most celebrated and controversial celebrities and brilliant minds. I’ve talked about this before but when this happened, I was 10. I had just gotten into some hard rock music, namely KISS a few years earlier and The Beatles and its various members were “old folk music,” to me; stuff my parents listened to. Well, at least Ma Mère.
I remember watching Monday Night Football and Howard Cosell coming on to tell the world that John Lennon had died. Shot twice in the back (according to Cosell) and rushed to the hospital where he was DOA. Now, a little bit later, Ted Koppel said on Nightline that he had been shot three times and died after arriving at the hospital. Most of the supported reports, now, state that he was shot at five times, hit four and was pretty much gone, pronounced DOA, upon getting to the hospital. It was surreal, to be sure, but it was also probably the first time I ever felt remorse.
For whatever reason, Ma Mère wasn’t home when we heard the news. She came home and I said in a mocking manner that someone of her “old music” had been murdered. I don’t know why I felt proud of that, but upon reflection of it, I felt really stupid and sad that I had said it and that I had felt the need to do so. That’s awful and I’ve never forgotten or let myself off the hook for it. I have since, obviously, discovered the genius that Lennon was, what he meant to the music world, what he meant to my musical heroes and what a loss it was.
So, 37 years later, people are still talking about him, much of his compositions are still relevant and still hold up in today’s musical realms. My favorite Beatle has always been and will always be Paul who was the heart, but John was the mind (George the soul, Ringo the body). RIP, Mr. Lennon.
So, on to happier things, if we don’t get snowed out, I’ll be playing with the Silver Alerts in Greensboro tonight. We’re playing the Crown of Carolina Theatre. The show starts at 7pm with Joshua West. Then, at 8ish, Doug Davis’ new band Gasket Hawkins goes on and then Doug joins Clay, Chad Huskey, Corky McClellan and me as a Silver Alert. I don’t know the cost of admission but we hope to see you there.
Until tomorrow, same blog channel…
“Yes, we have to say it. Remember this is just a football game, no matter who wins or loses. An unspeakable tragedy confirmed to us by ABC News in New York City: John Lennon, outside of his apartment building on the West Side of New York City, the most famous perhaps, of all of the Beatles, shot twice in the back, rushed to Roosevelt Hospital, dead on arrival. Hard to go back to the game after that news flash, which, in duty bound, we have to take.” – Howard Cosell