Lennon had previously released one other silent track: ‘Two Minutes Silence’ on 1969’s Unfinished Music No.2: Life With The Lions. The silent tribute was for John Ono Lennon II, the baby Lennon and Yoko Ono lost to a miscarriage in 1968.
‘Nutopian International Anthem’ was quite different in its concept. By 1973 Lennon’s music had become a mixture of personal and political, in the wake of the cathartic John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band and the political Some Time In New York City, and the lyrics of Mind Games were often lacking conviction and focus.
The conceptual country Nutopia had been announced by Lennon and Ono in a press release issued on 1 April 1973, and at a press conference the following day. The name was inspired by Thomas Moore’s book Utopia, published in 1516, which translated from modern Latin meant ‘no place’.
Nutopia too had no place, symbolised by a white flag, and the national anthem was without sound. The six-line ‘Declaration of Nutopia’ was printed on the inner sleeve for Mind Games, signed by Lennon and Ono:
We announce the birth of a conceptual country, NUTOPIA.
Citizenship of the country can be obtained by declaration of your awareness of NUTOPIA.
NUTOPIA has no land, no boundries [sic], no passports, only people.
NUTOPIA has no laws other than cosmic.
All people of NUTOPIA are ambassadors of the country.
As two ambassadors of NUTOPIA, we ask for diplomatic immunity and recognition in the United Nations of our country and its people.
Yoko Ono Lennon
John Ono Lennon
One White Street
New York, New York 10013
April 1st 1973
The seal of Nutopia was, fittingly, a picture of the marine mammal of the same name. A plaque bearing the words ‘NUTOPIAN EMBASSY’ was also positioned above the kitchen door of their apartment in the Dakota building.