As was mentioned this morning, today is the anniversary of the murder of rock legend John Lennon, who was killed outside his apartment building just before 11 p.m. via five gun shots. The killer, Mark David Chapman, had been stalking Lennon for months and even had contact with him earlier in the day (Lennon signed a copy of Double Fantasy for the guy who would take his life only hours later). Chapman’s motives remain unclear to this day (the film Chapter 27, starring 30 Seconds to Mars frontman Jared Leto as Chapman, didn’t offer many suggestions), but he remains incarcerated in a state prison in New York and has been denied parole five times, often because of campaigns lead by Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono.
Lennon’s legacy is, of course, iron-clad. Often thought of as the brain of the Beatles (with Paul as the heart, George as the soul and Ringo as the drummer), Lennon has created some of the most timeless rock songs in the history of the genre, and his influence gets renewed with every generation of future musicians who discover Revolver. It’s been a big year for Lennon’s songs, as they were featured on the extremely well-received video game “The Beatles: Rock Band” and the complete catalog was remastered in both stereo and mono versions of a deluxe box set. Lennon’s solo career is constantly being re-evaluated as well, with albums like Imagine and Mind Games getting deluxe re-issues and critical praise. But his best work remains his first. Check out the video for “Love,” from Lennon’s solo debut John Lennon/Pastic Ono Band.