Why do many people love John Lennon

A utopia for the ages

What that was, John Lennon discovered in his retreat. He recorded new music in his own studio and found his own voice. Always there: Yoko Ono - often as a silent observer, always as a creative partner. He was inspired by her. During these years, their political activism became more and more the common mission of the couple. They invited intellectuals to meet in Tittenhurst Park, opened their doors to anyone who wanted to talk about politics: the Vietnam War, the famine in Biafra, the student movement in Europe. John Lennon and Yoko Ono even made their honeymoon a protest in 1969: With “bed-ins” they demonstrated from the horizontal against the war in Vietnam. Music also became political. With the Plastic Ono Band they composed “Give Peace A Chance” in bed. It was the first piece that John Lennon published without the Beatles, and it pointed the way for his future music: it asks the audience to join in, show their imagination, make room for utopias. Yoko Ono's art inspired him to take this approach. In a poem from the volume “Grapefruit” from 1964 she had already invited: “Imagine the clouds dripping / Dig a hole in your garden to / put them in” (“Imagine the clouds are dripping / dig a hole in your Garden to put in ”).

The power of imagination

From there it wasn't far to the clouds on the album cover of "Imagine" (1971). This song also invites people to imagine a different, better world. A world without countries, religion or war. That hit the nerve at a time when the Summer of Love was mostly disappointment. The anti-war movement radicalized in 1971 with the unveiling of the Pentagon papers. It became clear that the US intervention in Vietnam was a planned push against communism - and not, as officially claimed, a reaction to Vietnamese aggression. In the summer of 1971, American society fell apart over the question of the meaning of the war.

Yoko Ono, however, began to doubt her withdrawn life more and more. She convinced John Lennon to move - away from the country, right into the center of political and artistic activism: to New York. They already had the song that would become the anthem of the anti-war movement in their luggage: “Imagine” was the product of their time in Tittenhurst Park - and, according to Yoko Ono, their relationship in general. In the last interview that John Lennon gave two days before his murder in December 1980, he admitted that the concept, even parts of the text of "Imagine", was his partner's idea. In 2017, this fact was finally recognized: almost 50 years after publication, Yoko Ono received the co-authorship of "Imagine".