Sunday, July 18, 2010

"Lennon Lives"

That is, according to this "Alternate History" at Consequence of Sound, he does.

It was 1980 and John Lennon had just come out of retirement with his first record in five years, Double Fantasy. After a sailing trip to Bermuda, he was itching to begin his career again with a renewed and sober outlook on life, but three weeks after his new album was released, a deranged fan had other plans. That fateful December night, David Chapman attempted to put four bullets in Lennon’s back. In the panic of the moment, he managed one shot in the shoulder before running off. Ironically, Lennon had autographed a copy of Double Fantasy for Chapman earlier that day, and now that man had nearly ended his life.

The world was relieved when Lennon pulled through. What would it have done had he not? Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono were left badly shaken, with Ono seeming to take it the hardest as she tried to isolate her husband from the outside world, paranoid that something similar would happen again. This strained her relationship with the rest of his camp, especially his old band, even further. This led to an artistic silent period for Lennon, writing at home but not releasing any of it on record until 1984’s Milk and Honey, even though most of the record would consist of songs from the Fantasy sessions. Public appearances were just as rare, and even though Chapman was quickly caught, tried, and sentenced, Lennon still felt a sense of being in constant danger for several years after.

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