John Lennon and Yoko Ono, a vinyl love story
Yoko Ono, multimedia artist and John Lennon the famous Beatles are an iconic couple mixing love, music and peace activism.
John Lennon, born in 1940, forms the Beatles band with Paul McCartney in the beginning of the sixties. The band enjoys a worldwide success and ends up in 1970.
Yoko Ono has multiple talents musician, composer, painter, performer, filmaker... After the war and its devastating effects, her family moves to New York where she quickly joins the underground art life and the Fluxus group at the end of the 50ies. She works with John Cage, makes movies among which the famous Bottoms 4, exhibits her work at the Georges Marcunias gallery and performs at the Carnegie Hall. John Lennon describes her as "the world's most famous unknown artist: everybody knows her name, but nobody knows what she does."
While in London in 1966 for a personal exhibition "Unfinished Paintings", she meets John Lennon...
In 1968, begins their love and music story
1968, the year of John Lennon's the first solo album Unfinished Music NO°1 Two Virgins, experimental music with a daring cover picture of the naked couple.
They get married in Gibraltar on March 20th 1969. During their honeymoon, to protest against the Viet-Nam war, they stay in bed for a whole week (March 25th-31st) in the Hilton Hotel of Amsterdam where they give interviews wearing pyjamas (not naked as many people imagined). It's their first Bed-ins for Peace. They will do it again in May in Montreal. They write together protest songs Give peace a chance and The balade of Ohn and Yoko
Yoko helps John to work with greater freedom and a more autobiographical inspiration. John has trade his second name Winston for Ono. This surname will be used to call their band: Plastic Ono Band, a band in which they can play alone or surrounded by friends such as the jazzman Ornette Coleman.
Vinyl Cover: watch out! A tree may hide another tree
In 1970, the first John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band's album comes out with protest (Working class hero) and melancholy songs (Isolation, Mother). The cover picture figures the couple resting at the foot of a large tree and John's head is resting on Yoko. The same year, Yoko will use a similar picture for her first album Why by Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band. Except that this time it's Yoko who is resting on John.
In 1971, each releases a new album: Imagine the greatest commercial solo success of John Lennon, which he describes as "same as Working Class Hero with sugar" and Fly de Yoko Ono.
Besides the Bed-in’s, they also created the Bagism, a protest technic used during interviews which consists in wrapping oneself in a bag to fight against preconceived opinions based on appearance,
Music, pacifism, and addictions... Both of them have an heroine addiction that they are trying to wean themselves off. In the summer of 1973, occurs what John will refer to as « the lost weekend ». Yoko tells him to get away. 18 months later, she agrees that he come back if he follows a macrobiotic diet, without meat or alcohol and let her entrust the management of his affairs.
1975-1980, vie de famille et fin tragique
En 1975, naît le petit Sean. Pour sa venue au monde, John arrête toute activité publique et se consacre à la vie domestique en marge de laquelle il dessine, écrit et fait de la musique. En 1980 il reprend sa carrière musicale avec un nouvel album Double Fantasy réalisé en étroite collaboration avec Yoko. Il meurt assassiné le 8 décembre 1980 à l’entrée de son domicile alors qu’il revenait des studios d’enregistrement pour son nouvel album Walking on thin ice.
In 1975, Baby Sean is born. Clebrating his birth, John stops all public activities and commits himself to his family life, drawing, writing and playing music when he finds time enough. In 1980, he resumes his musical carrier with the release of a new album Double Fantasy completed with the collaboration of Yoko. He is killed on Decembre 8th 1980 in the hall of his building coming back from the recording studios where he worked on a new album Walking on thin ice.
John Lennon "Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans"
Photo 1: Approximately infinite universe by Yoko Ono released in 1973 and cover back of the album Imagine by John Lennon 1971, displayed on the wall in the vinyl mounts VinylWaller.
Photo 2: first album solo by John Lennon Unfinished Music NO°1 Two Virgins
Photo 3 and 4: Working Class Heroe by John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band (on the left) and Why by Yoko Ono and the Plastic Ono Band, both released in 1970