Celebrating John Lennon

Celebrate the life of John Lennon by visiting key sites from his amazing musical journey.

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With a Little Help From My Friends

Help From My Friends

The Beatles, affectionately known as the “Fab Four,” were born in Liverpool, England between the years of 1940 and1943. However, it wasn't until about 20 years later that they would use their musical influence to take the world by storm, causing an entire generation to take notice, and changing the face of music forever.

Did You Know? George Harrison - Feb. 25, 1943 - 12 Arnold Grove (upper left)
John Lennon - Oct. 9, 1940 - 251 Menlove Ave (upper right)
Paul McCartney - June 18, 1942 - 20 Forthlin Rd (lower left)
Ringo Starr - July 7, 1940 - 10 Admiral Grove (lower right)
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Eleanor Rigby

On July 6, 1957, McCartney went to see a local band, The Quarrymen, perform at the village festival at St. Peter's Parish Church in Woolton, a suburb of Liverpool. It was on that fateful day that he met front man, John Lennon.

Did You Know? The cemetery at St. Peter's Parish Church is the final resting place of Eleanor Rigby. Initially, the iconic song, “Eleanor Rigby,” was written about a Miss Daisy Hawkins but McCartney felt the song required a name fit for a spinster. He took the name “Eleanor” from the actress that worked in the film, “Help!,” and “Rigby” from the name of a shop in town. McCartney later said that he may have also been subconsciously influenced by the name on the gravestone.
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Penny Lane

The song “Penny Lane” was written as part fact and part nostalgia about a bus roundabout in the Beatles’ hometown of Liverpool.

Did You Know? There is still a bank, a barber shop and a "shelter in the middle of a roundabout."
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I've Got a Feeling

Before replacing Pete Best for Ringo Starr in Aug. 1962, the Beatles began to make a name for themselves in Hamburg, Germany. Their stay in Germany was cut short after George Harrison was deported, but they returned shortly after for a 2 month stint at the Star Club after learning their friend and original bassist, Stu Sutcliffe, had died.

Did You Know? It's been said that the Gretel & Alfons Cafe, located a few doors from the Star Club, was the Beatles' favorite late night hangout spot in Germany.
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Want to Hold Your Hand

On Feb. 9, 1964, the Beatles performed live on the Ed Sullivan Show, setting Beatlemania into motion and redefining what it meant to be a pop/rock star forever.

Did You Know? 2014 marks the 50th Anniversary of the Beatles iconic performance. At the time, it was the most watched program in American TV history with 73 million viewers.
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Here, There, Everywhere

The Plaza Hotel, located at 5th Avenue on Central Park South, was a popular, upscale hotel in NYC where the band would stay while in the states. Upon their arrival to the hotel, to the dismay of the hotel staff, the band was always greeted by screaming teenagers that could be heard from all over the city.

Did You Know? The Plaza Hotel is located just 1.5 miles from Strawberry Fields in Central Park, site of the "Imagine" memorial commemorating the life of John Lennon.
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Strawberry Fields

Located on Beaconsfield Road, a short distance from Lennon’s childhood home, Strawberry Field was a Salvation Army children’s home where Lennon would attend summer garden parties and would play in the heavily-wooded grounds with his friends.

Did You Know? At the end of the record you can faintly hear Lennon saying words that sound similar to "I buried Paul." As later explained by the band, the words were actually "cranberry sauce," however, during the "Paul is Dead" hoax, fans felt that this was Lennon's way of saying he buried his friend.
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A Day in the Life

Between Feb. 1961 and Aug. 1963, the Beatles brought rock ‘n' roll in England to new heights, playing nearly 300 shows at the Cavern Club, a tiny cellar club on Mathew Street in downtown Liverpool. After performing at the Cavern Club, the boys would head over to the Jacaranda Club on Slater Street for a nightcap. The club was owned by the Beatles first manager, Allan Williams.

Did You Know? The Cavern Club still operates 7 days a week, and hosts an array of live performances. It also is the final destination on London's Magical Mystery Tour.
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Come Together

After making the move from Liverpool to London in the summer of 1963, the Beatles lived together at the Hotel President in Bloomsbury.

Did You Know? Shortly after, in the fall of 1963, the "Fab Four" moved into a flat at 57 Green St - the only true home shared by the Beatles.
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All My Loving

Women of all ages -- pre-teens to the elderly -- were wild for the Beatles. Everyone loved them, and they loved everyone. However, in 1966, that love started to fade. The band began to receive death threats, fans were getting injured, and the crowds became so loud that their songs couldn’t be heard. On Aug. 29, 1966, the Beatles gave their final "official" live performance as a band at San Francisco’s Candlestick Park.

Did You Know? The concert was captured in color by a 15-year-old boy named Barry Hood. Most of Hood’s original footage still remains unseen by the public nearly 50 years later.
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Abbey Road

Between the years of 1962 and 1970, the Beatles recorded nearly all of their music at EMI Studios, located at 3 Abbey Rd in the St. John’s Wood district of northwest London. After the release of their iconic album, which features cover art of the Fab Four crossing an intersection of Abbey Road, the studio was renamed to honor the international fame and success of the Beatles.

Did You Know? Only 2 or 3 Beatles members were present at the time of recording Abbey Road. This was partially due to Lennon's auto accident and because of creative differences between Lennon and McCartney.
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A Hard Day's Night

“A Hard Day's Night” was the first film starring the Beatles during the height of Beatlemania. Considered to be one of the most influential musical films of all time, the black and white comedy film portrays several days in the lives of rock ‘n' roll's original boy band. The Marylebone Train Station (pictured above) was the setting for the memorable opening scenes of the film.

Did You Know? The Beatles may be the most iconic musicians of all time, but they also earned their stripes as funny, witty and charismatic actors who starred in many films.
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Ballad of John & Yoko

After splitting from the Beatles, Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono moved from London to NYC in 1973, moving into the infamous Dakota Building. On the fateful night of Dec. 8, 1980, Lennon was assassinated in the entranceway of the Dakota.

Did You Know? Lennon and Ono met at The Scotch of St. James in Westminster, London (known today as the Directors Lodge Club), during an art show featuring Ono’s work in Nov. 1966.
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Hello, Goodbye

In Jan. 1968, the Beatles purchased the property at 3 Savile Row in London to act as headquarters to Apple Corps, a multimedia corporation founded by the Beatles. Apple Studio, where the Beatles recorded and produced their 12th and final album, was located in the property’s basement.

Did You Know? 3 Savile Row was also the location of the band's final 'public' performance -- a 42-minute set on the rooftop of Apple.
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Rock 'n' roll, country and rockabilly artists, including Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Charlie Feathers, Ray Harris, Warren Smith, Charlie Rich and Jerry Lee Lewis, recorded at Memphis' legendary Sun Studios. 960 1280

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Liverpool's legendary Cavern Club helped launch the world's greatest rock group -- The Beatles -- who made 292 appearances there from 1961 to 1963. In this photo, a pre-stardom George Harrison relaxes between sets at the Cavern. 960 1280

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The graffitied bathroom walls of legendary punk rock club CBGB. In its heyday in the 1970s and `80s the club helped define the punk and new wave sound. The Ramones, Misfits, Television, Patti Smith, Mink DeVille, The Fleshtones, The Voidoids, The Cramps, Blondie and Talking Heads started their careers at the club. 960 1280

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The Seattle-based grunge music scene fused heavy metal, punk and alternative rock to produce a unique sound in the early 1990s. In this photo Kurt Cobain (1967-1994) performs on stage with Nirvana at the MTV Video Music Awards, September 10, 1992. 960 1280

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Cafe Wha? in Greenwich Village, New York City, launched many young musicians to stardom. Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Bruce Springsteen, The Velvet Underground, Kool and the Gang, and Peter Paul & Mary, among others, performed at this club in their formative years. 960 1280

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The Cotton Club was a famous jazz club in Harlem, New York City, during the 1920s and `30s. The club featured many of the greatest African-American entertainers of the era, such as Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Bessie Smith, Cab Calloway, Ella Fitzgerald, Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie, Nat King Cole and Billie Holiday. 960 1280

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American country music singer and guitarist Loretta Lynn performs on stage at the Grand Ole Opry in the 1960s. The Grand Ole Opry is a weekly country music stage concert in Nashville, TN, that has presented the biggest stars of the genre since 1925. 960 1280

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Stax Records of Memphis, TN, was a major force in the creation of soul and funk music. Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes, Wilson Pickett, Sam & Dave, Booker T. & the MG's and the Staple Singers recorded for the label in the 1960s and '70s. 960 1280

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Austin, TX, has a vibrant live music scene with more venues per capita than any other US city. The city hosts the annual South by Southwest (SXSW) music festival which features over 2,000 acts in 4 days. In this photo, Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips performs at the Austin City Limits Music Festival at Zilker Park on September 17, 2006. 960 1280

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Fans pay their respects to pop star Michael Jackson at the Motown Historical Museum 'Hitsville USA' on June 25, 2009, in Detroit, MI. The legendary Motown sound produced dozens of mega hits for artists such as The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, The Supremes, The Temptations, Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson. 960 1280

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Perry Farrell, Slash and Robby Krieger of The Doors perform in the The Doors 40th Anniversary Celebration at the Whisky a Go Go on November 8, 2006, in West Hollywood, CA. The Byrds, Alice Cooper, Buffalo Springfield, Love and The Doors were regulars at the club in the 1960s, and in the '70s and '80s it spawned many punk, new wave and heavy metal bands. 960 1280

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Smoke comes from a fire at the Georgia Theatre June 19, 2009, in Athens, Georgia. The Georgia Theatre has been host to numerous bands including REM, the B-52's, Ghostface Killah and Widespread Panic. 960 1280

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Hillary Clinton talks with recording artist Bo Diddley (L) and Shirley Dixon-Nelson (C), daughter of blues great Willie Dixon, during a visit to Chess Records in Chicago, October 27, 1999. Chess Records specialized in blues and R&B in the 1950s and `60s. Famous Chess artists include Bo Diddley, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Chuck Berry, Etta James, John Lee Hooker and Sonny Boy Williamson II. 960 1280


Music Meccas  13 Photos

Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, co-founders of Kiss, spent their teenage years in Queens, New York (shown here: the Town Hall in Flushing, Queens) and formed a band named Wicked Lester. Their career quickly took off when they recruited drummer Peter Criss and guitarist Ace Frehley in 1973. 960 1280

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Kiss achieved its breakthrough hit with the release of their live album Alive! in 1975. Now sporting their iconic costumes and makeup, Kiss began a hugely successful world tour. (L to R: Ace Frehley, Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley and Peter Criss). 960 1280

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Kiss pose on Westminster Bridge in London at the start of their first-ever European tour in 1976. 960 1280

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Kiss released 3 platinum albums between 1976 and '77 -- Rock and Roll Over, Love Gun and Alive II -- and were named the most popular band in America in a Gallup poll. In Japan, Kiss performed 5 sold-out shows at Tokyo's Budokan Hall (shown here), breaking the previous record held by The Beatles. 960 1280

By ibamoto takehiko [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons  

Despite declining record sales in the 1980s and '90s and a brief stint without the makeup, Kiss remained a hugely popular touring band. Here they are shown performing at the halftime show of Super Bowl XXXIII in Miami, FL, on January 31, 1999. 960 1280

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Gene Simmons plays with fire at the party following the premiere of the film Detroit Rock City on August 9, 1999, in Los Angeles. The film, set in 1978, follows 4 teenagers who set out on an adventure to attend a Kiss concert. 960 1280


Kiss was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame on August 11, 1999. Pictured (L to R) Ace Frehley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss and Paul Stanley. 960 1280

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(L to R) Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons and Peter Criss of Kiss at the sixth annual National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) Heroes Award 2001 Gala at the Hotel Roosevelt in New York City. 960 1280

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Kiss start their set with pyrotechnics at the Rockin' the Corps concert at Camp Pendleton in California on April 1, 2005. More than 40,000 Marines and their families attended the concert, which was held to thank US Marines who served in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. 960 1280


Customers drink in front of the Kiss Coffeehouse, which opened in 2006 in Myrtle Beach, SC. Besides drinks and food (such as Demon Dark Roast, Rockuccino and deep-fried Twinkies) the coffeehouse features displays of instruments, costumes, set lists and makeup used by the band on several of their tours. 960 1280

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