Tuesday, October 09, 2012

John Lennon's Birthday

John Lennon's birthday & people are posting grim songs from John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. Mother, I Found Out, God, Isolation. I bought the record within days of its release. Admired its brutal honesty, thought John's singing was his best ever,  considered Phil Spector's production perfect for the project, appreciated the stripped down instrumentation  Oh yes, it is a "great" album. But I have never really liked it.  I just didn't care about John Lennon's psychic agonies. I didn't have the kind of emotional investment in The Beatles  or the band's dissolution that carried me over to a plodding song like "Mother" with its then-fashionable primal screaming. I loved Neil Young's Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere & After the Goldrush,  plenty of pain on those records with Neil not even bothering to clearly articulate, as John did, what exactly was causing it all.  In fact, in 1970 rock was starting to loosen its grip on me,  I was exploring other kinds of music, & for the nest  five years only a handful of rock albums made a strong impression on me.  The one with perhaps the most impact was Lenny Kaye's Nuggets, a two disk compilation of Sixties one hit wonders, proto-punkers, & 45 rpm psychedelic weirdness.

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"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." Thomas Jefferson

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