-- In celebration of the 50th anniversary of The Beatles' first trip to the United States, the Hard Rock Cafe's website is streaming a two-hour audio interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono from December 1968 that's never before been heard in its entirety. The conversation was conducted by a then-college student from the U.K. named Maurice Hindle at Lennon's home in Surrey, England.
HardRock.com also is featuring transcripts from the interview, an analysis of what Lennon discussed, and a related memorabilia gallery. In addition, the Hard Rock Café in New York City will host a "Lost Lennon Interview" listening party event this Sunday that will feature a Q&A session with Hindle himself, as well as Hard Rock historian Jeff Nolan and Beatles author and expert Andy Babiuk, who also is the longtime bassist of the retro-rock band The Chesterfield Kings. The event also will feature a free performance by tribute group The Cavern Club Beatles and an appearance by Lennon's half-sister Julia Baird, who'll be signing copies of her memoir Imagine This -- Growing Up with My Brother John Lennon.
Lennon personally accepted Hindle's request for an interview, which he'd sent to a Beatles fanzine. Among the many topics Lennon chatted about were his political activism, the power his music had to influence people's beliefs, and his reaction to a letter printed in leftist newspaper The Black Dwarf accusing him of selling out. He also alludes to a 1969 tour The Beatles were considering and to a live album, both of which never came to be.
"Before interviewing John Lennon in 1968 on how he saw 'revolution,' I was already an independent-minded person," says Hindle in a statement. "After hearing John's ideas on creative change, my sense of independent creative purpose really deepened and expanded and it has energized me ever since."
The Hard Rock company purchased the Lennon interview tapes in 1987. Says Nolan, "We're proud to share them in them in their entirety to music fans around the globe -- free of charge. It's a powerful, memorable experience illustrating the timeless nature of John Lennon's artistry and philosophy."
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