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Did John Lennon have gay leanings?
29 July 2013
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mccartneyalarm
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I had forgotten about John's sexual feelings toward Julia. You're right. He wasn't sure how to deal with most of his emotions which is probably why his music and writings were so extraordinary. I know he used to call Yoko "mother" even before Sean was born. Always thought that was a huge clue to the whirlwind of emotions going on in John's head!

"And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make."

29 July 2013
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DrBeatle
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It's a big reason why he needed a dominant woman who would run his life the way Yoko did. It mimicked what he had growing up with his Aunt Mimi. Look at when he was the dominant one in the relationship (Thelma Pickles, Cynthia)...they were subservient to him, hell Cynthia tried to be the perfect 60s housewife to him, and he was miserable, hitting her and arguing and not being bothered to be a decent husband and father. And then the polar opposite when he was with Yoko. The only time he seemed truly happy on an equal level with a women was when he was with May Pang, and even that was rocky.

 

A very interesting, complex man, which is one of the reason I'm fascinated with him beyond the music

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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29 July 2013
7.08pm
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He is a fascinating character, and I can find myself identifying with him in many ways.

Dr. Beatle, Yoko withdrew her approval from the Norman biography because he painted John in a negative light--it had nothing to do with her.  Norman made her look good because he thought she was going to endorse it.  Norman talks about this in the epilogue at the end of the book.

"This Beatles talk bores me to death." --John Lennon

29 July 2013
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DrBeatle
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Expert Textpert said
He is a fascinating character, and I can find myself identifying with him in many ways.

Dr. Beatle, Yoko withdrew her approval from the Norman biography because he painted John in a negative light--it had nothing to do with her.  Norman made her look good because he thought she was going to endorse it.  Norman talks about this in the epilogue at the end of the book.

Ah yes, I had it switched around, thanks for jogging my memory (it's been a while since I've read it). Funny thing is, he (rightfully) took a lot of stick for canonizing John and trashing Paul, George, and Ringo in Shout! but he went to the other extreme in the biography. Although truthfully I don't think it's trashing John or portraying him negatively so much as not sugarcoating the man's faults. But Yoko has sold Saint Lennon's myth since 1980 so I can see why she refused to stamp her approval on it (not that I agree with it...I don't!)

 

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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30 July 2013
4.59pm
mccartneyalarm
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I've often wondered...was John really happy with Yoko? Had he lived, would he still be with her today? I agree with Dr. Beatle that the only non-dominating woman he was really happy with was May Pang. But, I believe that he and Yoko would have fallen apart if he were still with us today. And, except for his money, I believe that she eventually would have dumped him (as long as she found another sugar daddy. ) I don't think Yoko liked men (not saying she was attracted to women, although that thought has crossed my mind more than once). I'm just wondering if John was really happy with her. Maybe he simply couldn't be happy with anyone.

"And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make."

30 July 2013
5.18pm
DrBeatle
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I don't think he was, personally. From everything I've read and studied, by the end I feel he was kind of "stuck" (see George's comments about visiting at the Dakota and feeling like John wanted to say more but couldn't because Yoko was always around). Also, people from 1968 until his death all asked (and talked amongst themselves), "what power does she have over him?" Mick Jagger, Cynthia, Paul and Linda, George, Pete Shotton, his sisters...they all wondered it. What would make him literally in one day go from being ready to serve divorce papers to Yoko, buying a house with May and proposing to her, and heading to New Orleans to write and record with Wings, to going back to the Dakota and cutting off all ties with everyone? It's so bizarre. I've read many accounts that people who knew him during the Lost Weekend said that was the real John, similar to how he was pre-Yoko and that he was almost like a zombie after getting back with her. Also, his diary tapes from the late 70s, and what he said to everyone at the Record Plant (since Yoko was almost never present during his sessions for his songs) paint the picture of a miserable guy who was ready to move on and reconnect with the past (his forthcoming trip to the UK and Mimi, rumblings of a Beatles reunion, renewing his partnership with Paul, etc).

Sorry to get so longwinded and off track. The gist of it...I believe with 100% of my being that he wanted out and was stuck.

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"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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30 July 2013
5.23pm
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DrBeatle said
I don't think he was, personally. From everything I've read and studied, by the end I feel he was kind of "stuck" (see George's comments about visiting at the Dakota and feeling like John wanted to say more but couldn't because Yoko was always around). Also, people from 1968 until his death all asked (and talked amongst themselves), "what power does she have over him?" Mick Jagger, Cynthia, Paul and Linda, George, Pete Shotton, his sisters...they all wondered it. What would make him literally in one day go from being ready to serve divorce papers to Yoko, buying a house with May and proposing to her, and heading to New Orleans to write and record with Wings, to going back to the Dakota and cutting off all ties with everyone? It's so bizarre. I've read many accounts that people who knew him during the Lost Weekend said that was the real John, similar to how he was pre-Yoko and that he was almost like a zombie after getting back with her. Also, his diary tapes from the late 70s, and what he said to everyone at the Record Plant (since Yoko was almost never present during his sessions for his songs) paint the picture of a miserable guy who was ready to move on and reconnect with the past (his forthcoming trip to the UK and Mimi, rumblings of a Beatles reunion, renewing his partnership with Paul, etc).

Sorry to get so longwinded and off track. The gist of it...I believe with 100% of my being that he wanted out and was stuck.

Where did you get all this information about John wanting to reunite with The Beatles, renew a partnership with Paul, record with Wings, divorce Yoko, and marry May Pang?

I've never heard any of that.  What I've read is that John was miserable without Yoko and basically became a desperate alcoholic, begging her to take him back...and that the Lost Weekend was like a big party supervised by John's secretary (Pang).  Yoko provided the stability that he craved.  I think that had he lived, he and Yoko would have gone on to create more really good music together.

But really...where did all that info you have come from?

"This Beatles talk bores me to death." --John Lennon

30 July 2013
5.29pm
DrBeatle
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Read "You Never Give Me Your Money." It's all in there. And in other books. Paul and Linda were expecting John and May in New Orleans for the Venus and Mars sessions when at the last minute he bailed. It's all documented extensively in that book. There were multiple times in the late 70s when they'd set something up and at the last minute Yoko would answer the phone and scupper it. Basically, every time she caught wind of Paul and John planning something, she sabotaged it.

And quite the opposite...LOADS of people who were around John in '73-'75 during the Lost Weekend state how he badmouthed Yoko and bitched all the time about her, how she wouldn't stop pestering and calling him, etc and he was ready to move on. It's also a misconception that it was one big party. He went nuts with booze and drugs at first, but once the Rock N'Roll debacle with Phil Spector hit, he cleaned up his act and was very focused (Walls and Bridges) and happy. Hell, Cynthia and Julian came to hang out and they went with him and May to Disney World for a vacation!

Again, the truth is quite a bit different from the myth that's been built (mainly by Yoko) since 1980.

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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30 July 2013
6.24pm
vonbontee
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Well, if he was with May Pang at the tme, I don't see how he could very well have NOT bitched about Yoko! What's he gonna say, "Have you met May? She's no Yoko but she'll do for now, at least until I get back to New York with Mother herself!" And again, those "rumblings" of a Beatles reunion - they were just John blowing smoke, as part of the anti-Beatlemania! lawsuit, weren't they?

I just want to play. I’d like to think I could work opposite Sinatra, B.B. King, the Beatles, or a polka band... - Jazz musician Rahsaan Roland Kirk, 1967
30 July 2013
6.34pm
Funny Paper
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The problem with blaming Yoko is that it shifts responsibility away from John for his own actions -- which, of course, he may have indulged in himself (ironic for the writer of "Woman is Nigger of the World").

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30 July 2013
6.36pm
DrBeatle
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Well, if he was a miserable without Yoko and missed her and pined her as much as it's been made to seem, wouldn't he have run to the phone everytime she called him, which by all accounts was several times a day. Instead, he refused to speak many times and complained about how she pestered him. That was my point :)

Yeah, there's speculation he made that statement/affadavit to head off the Beatlemania! production, but on the other hand it's a bit much to swear to something that is 100% not true, don't you think? Also there are strong rumors (even some evidence) that all 4 had planned to meet up during the sessions for Ringo's Stop and Smell the Roses album (which they were all contributing to)...all speculation but with enough behind it to make it seem more plausible than not.

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

Please Visit My Website, The Rock and Roll Chemist

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30 July 2013
6.42pm
meanmistermustard
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The first part of fab4free4all's 1974 discusses John in 1974 and how the lost weekend is the wrong term for that time as whilst he was out on the town with Nilsson, Ringo and the others in LA for a period, as DR Beatle said, he quit the scene and moved to New York, getting himself straightened out. It sounds like an interesting period to read about but it would need to be written from a clear starting point.

 

A lot of the later John and Yoko story is rubbish if you look behind what they said in interviews in 1980 and Yoko afterwards - its a weird experience hearing John say with full conviction that he never picked up a guitar in 5 years and all the songs on Double Fantasy and Milk and Honey just came to him in a moment of inspiration when you know full well there are 5 years of demos where John pieces songs together.

The unofficial reports go that John and Yoko were heading for a divorce in the early 80's and that Yoko had been seeing someone on and off (David Spinozza?). It certainly wasn't all wonderful bliss in the Dakota with John making the bread and caring for Sean and Yoko doing the finance, going from whats on the home recording tapes that are out there and what others have said. Personally speaking I take most of what Yoko says with a pinch of salt.

Don’t make your love suffer insecurities, trade the baggage of self to set another one free. ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)
30 July 2013
7.22pm
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In the Playboy interviews in 1980 John seems very happy with Yoko.  I just don't see him getting a divorce.  From what I've read, Yoko didn't even want John back after the Lost Weekend because she valued her artistic freedom and felt his fame was a strain.  He persisted and she finally relented.  John pretty much says the same thing.

It's natural to want to vent about a wife or girlfriend to your friends if you are having problems, but I wouldn't say Yoko had some sort of weird spell on him--if anything, he just loved her and wanted to be with her.

I'll have to check out You Never Give Me Your Money and see what it says, though.

Also, I never read anything about him saying that Yoko pestered him.  I read that he was always calling and saying "take me back" and she said no...and John is the one who told this story, not Yoko.

"This Beatles talk bores me to death." --John Lennon

30 July 2013
7.30pm
DrBeatle
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From what I've read, he called and asked and she said no. So he stopped calling. As soon as that happened, she was relentless in how often she called on the phone. Also, yes, he does seem content in the Playboy interview, but Jack Douglas and others in the studio during the DF sessions paint a different picture..they couldn't stand to be in the same room together for most of it, and it wasn't all down to just musical differences. We'll never know for sure but I lean heavily toward him wanting out. The fact that she took up with someone literally 2 months after his death says a lot, too.

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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30 July 2013
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Why did he write Grow Old With Me, Dear Yoko, (Afraid I'm) Losing You, and Woman if he couldn't stand to be in the same room with her?  I don't buy it.

"This Beatles talk bores me to death." --John Lennon

30 July 2013
7.41pm
DrBeatle
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I dunno. The whole narrative is full of contradictions. On one hand he did seem truly happy and fulfilled during that period. On the other hand, he seemed bored, stuck, and miserable looking for a way out. Both are documented and corroborated by others around him, as well as John himself. The man was such a paradox wrapped up in a human package that we'll never know for sure.

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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30 July 2013
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vonbontee
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Exactly.

I just want to play. I’d like to think I could work opposite Sinatra, B.B. King, the Beatles, or a polka band... - Jazz musician Rahsaan Roland Kirk, 1967
30 July 2013
8.20pm
meanmistermustard
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Another theory is that it was John who wanted to be with Yoko and Yoko wanted out hence the supposed affair, Johns unhappiness in the Dakota and the drugs etc - the track titles from Double Fantasy and Milk and Honey are used as part of the argument (John: Im Losing You, Woman, Forgive Me (My Flower Princess); Yoko: I'm Moving On). John only snapped out of his isolation when it became a possibility that Yoko was going to leave him. No idea how much of that is true as there are so many differing accounts of what the reality was and what went on in the Dakota throughout those 5 years, I doubt we'll ever know the truth.

Don’t make your love suffer insecurities, trade the baggage of self to set another one free. ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)
30 July 2013
8.45pm
DrBeatle
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^great points. It's been said by many that he was almost hermetic and completely sealed off from everyone else, apart from their yearly trips to Japan. In fact, there's a famous quote where a Dakota doorman said "The Lennons never go anywhere." He was then asked where the Lennon's really go when they leave the building. He answered "Japan." Obviously they went some places (the annual birthday parties for John and Sean at Tavern on the Green, for example) but not much.

"I know you, you know me; one thing I can tell you is you got to be free!"

 

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30 July 2013
9.16pm
meanmistermustard
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a-hard-days-night-ringo-8Tho John himself disputes that in the Andy Peebles 1980 BBC radio where he said that they were always going out into New York and meeting fans on the streets who would say howdie but not pester him, its just that they never made the papers as they were out of the scene having not returned phone calls.

Its an incredibly tangled period to unravel as the two people it concerns give a completely different to what was said to be happening yet they're not the most reliable witnesses to call upon.

Don’t make your love suffer insecurities, trade the baggage of self to set another one free. ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)
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