Saturday, December 08, 2007

8th December 1980

Twenty seven years ago today in an action that has never been explained in terms other than those of a crazy young kid (see other assorted high school and shopping mall shootings), the world was robbed of a unique talent.

At 5pm on that day John Lennon and Yoko Ono left their apartment in the Dakota Building in New York to work on Yoko's musical album, outside the building they signed autographs for a handful of fans, among them the 25 year old Mark Chapman who had his photograph taken whilst Lennon signed his copy of the new Lennon and Ono album "Double Fantasy".

When the Lennons returned to the Dakota at 10.50pm both the doorman and the cab driver saw Chapman waiting in a nearby doorway, as Lennon exited the cab Chapman called his name out once, Lennon turned to face Chapman who had already pulled a gun and dropped to a "combat" stance whereupon he fired five shots, one missed, two hit Lennon in the left shoulder, two in the left side of his back, all the hollow point bullets caused serious internal damage rupturing an aorta, Lennon staggered up the entrance steps to the Dakota Building where he was held by their doorman who had summoned emergency help, in a famous statement the doorman called out to Chapman who by now was sitting motionless on the pavement, "Do you know what you have done ?" to which Chapman calmly repled "I've just shot John Lennon", Lennon died in the emergency room at Roosevelt Hospital at 11.15pm.

The video for "Woman" was described by Lennon as being a "grown up version of the Beatles song "Girl"" and was released early in 1981, it was a #1 hit.

There is no doubt that Lennon would have still been involved in the music scene if he had still been alive and whilst, like most artists, he had produced some dross, the Double Fantasy album had been marked as a highlight in his solo career, who knows what would have followed ?


Zoe's Dad said...

Tragedy! I was only 15 years old and had no appreciation of Lennon or the Beatles. I still felt robbed. Still do!

Gary said...

Lennon had gone through a rough phase before 1980, for five years he'd been in a musical wilderness but the Double Fantasy album had been critically acclaimed in '80 and it looked like he'd really got his act together and come up with a great album to relaunch himself - thats what makes his death even more of an "if only" moment in time.