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John’s death: where were you, how did you react?
8 December 2009
7.33pm
Amphion
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Today is, of course, the 29th Anniversary of the murder of John Lennon . As with many events of such a catastrophic impact, the memory of the day lingers on forever. I myself was awoken on the morning of Wednesday, 09th December 1980, by my late father, who having given me a cup of tea, muttered that my mate had been killed and left the room. Puzzled, trying to make sense of what the old man had said, trying to figure out which of my mates had met with such an untimely end, I got dressed quickly and then went to find my father in the kitchen. Nothing further had to be said. it is the only time I remember Radio 4 playing pop/rock music., and the continual past tense references to John made me soon realise what my father was trying to tell me! I do regard John as a mate of sorts.

 I first heard the Beatles as a result of my older brothers passion for the group during the sixties. Not necessarily interested by them until the latter part of the seventies. When my favorite group of 1977's latest album had just about been played to mania.and I realised that it would be at least two years before that group would release another album I needed something to fill the gap. I dug out my older brothers old Beatles albums, and truely discovered for the first time, the diversity of their genius. since then I have collected everything the Beatles ever recorded. I even bought a CD player for the first time simply so I could hear 'Pepper' in all its glory. I bought my first VCR so I could watch the Yellow Submarine video. I am now updating my collection as a result of the new digital upgrade, and I am also considering buying the whole mono collection as well. In future centuries the name Beatles will be as prized as that of Shubert or Beeethoven. To think that we actually lived in tha era is a remarkable thing. And so to you John, all I can say is thanks.

Note by Ahhh Girl 6 August 2014: I merged 3 threads on this topic. Posts 1-8 were a thread titled "Remembering John". Posts 9-56 were a thread titled "December 8th". Some of the posts stray a bit off topic, but there are many stories of people telling about how they learned of John's death and their reaction to it.

8 December 2009
8.28pm
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Joe
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And to you, I say amen to that. I'm sure everyone who was old enough at the time remembers precisely where they were when they heard that John had died.

I was only four years old at the time, and probably only dimly aware of The Beatles' music. The gruesome truth, apparently, is that I'd just been sick in our house; my mum was cleaning it up when my dad came to the bathroom and said "John Lennon 's been shot". I'm told they were both numb with shock.

This may sound horrible, but in a way I'm quite glad it happened while I wasn't old enough to understand. As I was growing up John was always a historical figure, whereas the other Beatles still had a public persona of sorts. I really wouldn't know how I'd deal with hearing about such a brutal event now.

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8 December 2009
9.23pm
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skye
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Joe said:

This may sound horrible, but in a way I'm quite glad it happened while I wasn't old enough to understand. As I was growing up John was always a historical figure, whereas the other Beatles still had a public persona of sorts. I really wouldn't know how I'd deal with hearing about such a brutal event now.


I can understand that. It was 3 years before I was born and my parents were living in Portland, Oregon at the time. My mom said that there was a spontaneous candlelight vigil that night. I start crying just thinking about it. I would have been a mess if I had been there.

Ad hoc, ad loc, and quid pro quo! So little time! So much to know!

8 December 2009
11.06pm
Amphion
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One other sad aspect associated with John's passing was the fact that as of 8th December 1980, The Beatles could never reform. Through out the seventies the group had turned down stacks of money offered if they would reform. In fact, in 1979, one promoter in the USA took out a full page add in the New York Times offering the group a million to get back together for just one gig. They turned that down also. It is also sad to note that in 1979, on what was his 39th birthday, (9th October) John and Yoko donated a certain amount of money to the New York Police Department so that they could buy themselves bulllet proof vests. Kind of an ironic thing, sadly.

9 December 2009
12.13am
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mjb
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Amphion said:One other sad aspect associated with John's passing was the fact that as of 8th December 1980, The Beatles could never reform.


I always loved George's little quote about this: "The Beatles will never get back together whilst John Lennon remains dead". Sad, but true.

"If we feel our heads starting to swell.....we just look at Ringo!"

9 December 2009
2.21am
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Sun Queen
Find me in my field of grass
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Man, it was a tough day for me. I wasn't born til 12 years after his death, so I feel somewhat disconnected to his death; that it's just a historical event that happened once. Ugh, it's hard.

When I woke up this morning, I just played Beatles music, putting it on shuffle. The first song was 'This Boy ', which was ironic, because the first lines being, "that boy took my love away" could relate to "that horrible boy" (you all know who I speak of) who took our boy away. It gave me shivers.

To John, I love you. I'm so sad and regretful that I never even lived in your lifetime. We love you and miss you and are still rocking out to you as always.

Tongue, lose thy light. Moon, take thy flight… see ya, George!

9 December 2009
7.39am
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mjb
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I've told this story before , but it kind of fits in here again:

On the morning of 9th December 1980 the phone rang whilst I was still in bed. The phone was in the hallway and my Mum answered it.  I heard her say "no he's not up yet, he hasn't heard". When she put the phone down I called out and asked what was going on. "Something awful has happened" she said. Now don't ask me why I said what I did next, but it just came out.... I replied "It's one of the Beatles isn't it, someone had died. It's John". And as we all know it was indeed John.  Why did I assume that? Just one of those things.

 

I was 22 at the time. My eldest daughter asked me last night when we were watching something about John on TV, if I cried when he died and I told her that I did. My wife overheard and all of a sudden it was "Oh, did you, really?". It surprised them I think. I related the above story and they were quite intrigued as no one at home as ever seen 'Dad' cry and thought it rather touching! Thinking back to that day what I remember is what a waste it was, to take someone who had just re-appeared for us all and was so full of life and hope and then it was finished. It wasn't until later on that day, after coming home from work, that I was listening the the news on the radio. Immediately after the news the DJ who was starting his show said something along the lines of "It's no 'good afternoon' today is it?" and then immediately played In My Life . And that is when it happened...........

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"If we feel our heads starting to swell.....we just look at Ringo!"

9 December 2009
2.39pm
Amphion
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I don't remember crying, but I do remember being dumbstruck for a fair few days. I was then just about 19, so I already had a kind of vacant look about me anyway. The thing was, that I had ordered John's 'New' album, Double Fantasy , towards the end of September 1980, but had never got 'round to picking it up. In the wake of John's tragic death, of course, all sorts of Lennon/Beatles merchendise was on the shelves in the shops, many of which I didn't own, and would probably have liked to own. But I refused to buy them under such circumstances. I did buy the Double Fantasy album. Unfortunately, I cannot hear that album now, without feeling the way I did when I first heard the album then. It kind of haunts me.

30 November 2010
9.55pm
mr. Sun king coming together
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Do any of You have Memories of One Of Rock's Darkest Days? I wasn't born yet fortunately but I plan on only listening To Lennon all Day, with nothing Else except for Some tributes to Him.

I.............RIP John Lennon

As if it matters how a man falls down.'

'When the fall's all that's left, it matters a great deal.

30 November 2010
10.50pm
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vonbontee
Inside an Apple Orchard in a Letterbox
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I didn't find out 'till the morning of the 9th, walking to school, meeting one of my 8th grade classmates: "Hey, did you hear? One of the Beatles got shot last night!" I asked him which one, and was surprised to hear it was John Lennon . I knew that "Just Like Starting Over" had just begun to be played on the radio a few weeks previous, and I found it totally surreal that a performer could be killed while having a hit record that was still on the charts.

Someone said 'What were you gonna do when it's all finished,' and I said 'I don't know but it'd be good fun being a DJ.' And since then I've become a DJ, only by word of mouth, you know. SO any minute now you'll read, 'Ringo leaves to become a DJ' but it's not true. - Ringo Starr

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https://rateyourmusic.com/~Myo.....Von_Bontee

30 November 2010
11.35pm
mr. Sun king coming together
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I've Always found that ironic that he dies when his hit was (Just Like) Starting Over, You Know.

My Classic Rock radio station has called it Rock's Darkest Day, And I can't disagree

As if it matters how a man falls down.'

'When the fall's all that's left, it matters a great deal.

30 November 2010
11.52pm
mr. Sun king coming together
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The way so many people heard of his death, Here is Howard Cosell telling a nation of John's Death

As if it matters how a man falls down.'

'When the fall's all that's left, it matters a great deal.

1 December 2010
2.41am
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RufusWild
New York, NY
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Horrible, horrible, horrible.

 

I live in NYC and as a fifteen year-old used to go to sleep listening to talk radio.  I went to sleep not knowing and woke up knowing.  Craziest feeling I ever had, almost like I'd dreamt it, and the dream had come true.  Of course, the dream was over.

 

Came across this today, thought it was pretty interesting:

 

http://nickdavisproducer.blogs.....ass-2.html

"We were just a band, who made it very very big, that's all."

1 December 2010
5.51am
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mithveaen
Sitarday's room
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I was in my living room with my Dad was watching *that* football game. I was doing my homework on the coffee table. They said that John had passed away and we told my sisters. I think they started crying. I remember it was a huge, huge moment.

 

The following days my Dad got us all the newspapers and my sisters started a scrapbook. Later, we got a lot of magazines and we filled the scrapbook with Beatle pics. It's lost now.

Here comes the sun….. Scoobie-doobie……

Something in the way she moves…..attracts me like a cauliflower…

Bop. Bop, cat bop. Go, Johnny, Go.

Beware of Darkness… 

1 December 2010
8.55am
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Joe
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I was four. I'd just been sick and my mum was clearing it up when my dad came to the doorway and said "John Lennon 's been shot". He didn't say he was dead but they both knew.

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2 December 2010
1.06am
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kingjjj8
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This year I am going to try to my family to do a memorial for the beloved John. We all should.

Rap music is just computerized crap. - George Harrison

2 December 2010
3.12pm
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Zig
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As mr. Sun king coming together mentioned above, I heard it first from Howard Cosell while watching Monday Night Football.

Up to that point, 1980 was a glorious year for me. There were four of us that hung out together all that summer and had the times of our lives going to parties, concerts, camping trips, etc.... Then, I started my Senior Year in High School, turned 17 in November and just felt like I was on top of the world.

It all came to a resounding thud that night. I was stunned and probably got about 10 minutes sleep if I was lucky. The next day, my buddy and I met at the bus stop and I remember an awful lot of tears that day. Like most Beatles fans I kept hoping for some type of reunion, just knowing in my heart it was going to happen.

As RufusWild said above, "Craziest feeling I ever had, almost like I'd dreamt it, and the dream had come true.  Of course, the dream was over."

To the fountain of perpetual mirth, let it roll for all its worth. And all the children boogie.

2 December 2010
9.38pm
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MeanMrsMustard
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All this is making me sort of glad I wasn't born until 1995....

If I seem to act unkind, it's only me, it's not my mind that is confusing things.

3 December 2010
8.30pm
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parco63
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I was 17 years old, in the middle of my senior year of high school.  A friend who had moved to Los Angeles (I was living in Casper, Wyoming) called to tell me the news.  Shock, disbelief, numbness, anger.  Did not cry, but felt an overwhelming sense of emptiness.   Could not fathom it--no way could JL be gone for good, and especially not under these circumstances.

Was especially disgusted and hurt because I've been a Lennon fan since I was 11 years old and had enthusiastically welcomed his return to active music making with Double Fantasy .  Hearing "Starting Over" on the radio was such a thrill before the murder, then it became bittersweet in the extreme.  Listening to the radio was exciting again because Lennon was back, sounding robust, happy, energetic.  You also had Bruce Springsteen at the same time, with "Hungry Heart."  That was a great combo for the Top 40.

After getting off the phone, went to the TV set thinking, no, it just can't be true.  Something 's inaccurate, or he'll pull through.  But it was true, and it was true everywhere I turned.

I remember thinking then, and still think of it this way, that with the election of Ronald Reagan in early November 1980 and the murder of John Lennon a little over a month later, that the 1980s would be a tough time.  I was right, I believe.

The absence of John Lennon in the form of a world tour that never happened, and in so many other forms, hurt then and still hurts.  At the same time, there was a part of me that wasn't surprised that someone out there hated him enough to stalk and kill him.  In a bizarre and disgusting way, it made sense, while at the same time it made no sense.  John Lennon was such a life force, so much larger than life in many ways, that small people like MDC would project their hate, fear, and insecurity onto him.

I've often felt that JL would've been better off not making his comeback in 1980, if that would have saved his life, but that's the wrong way to think about such things.

To repeat what I've said in another part of this forum, no one in popular music today has JL's charisma, guts, and presence.  Not even close.  He set the bar high, changed lots of lives, paid the ultimate price for his bravery and artistry.  I'm glad to have lived while he was working his magic and to see that the magic has endured, at least in some ways.  I don't know if music and culture would be any different than how they've turned out, but it's a damned shame we'll never know.   

two-virgins

3 December 2010
9.05pm
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mithveaen
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a-hard-days-night-ringo-8  Very well said man..

Here comes the sun….. Scoobie-doobie……

Something in the way she moves…..attracts me like a cauliflower…

Bop. Bop, cat bop. Go, Johnny, Go.

Beware of Darkness… 

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