12 Facts You May Not Know About John Lennon

john-lennonJohn Lennon was the leader and founding member of the Beatles.  Whether as a singer, composer, musician, writer, or actor, John was a true original. Not only was he a great artist, but he was a truly fascinating man. (And yes, it has now been over 32 years since John Lennon was gunned down senselessly; my how the time has flown!)

Let’s take a look at a few facts you might not have known about John Lennon:

1) He was a choir boy and a boy scout: Yes, John Lennon, the great rock ‘n roll rebel and iconoclast, started his singing career as a choir boy at St. Peter’s church and was a member of the 3rd Allerton Boy Scout troop.

2) He was the last Beatle to learn how to drive: John got his driver’s license at the age of 24 (Feb. 15, 1965). This late attempt at driving seems to be for good reason- he was a terrible driver. He finally gave up driving after he totaled his Aston-Martin in 1969 on a trip to Scotland with his wife, Yoko Ono, his son, Julian, and Kyoko, Ono’s daughter. Lennon needed 17 stitches after the accident. He and Yoko mounted the wrecked car on a pillar at their home in England. He always used a chauffeur or driver after this incident.

3) He was the only Beatle who didn’t become a full-time vegetarian.  George Harrison was the first Beatle vegetarian; according to most sources, he became an official vegetarian in 1965.  Paul McCartney joined the “veggie” ranks a few years later. Ringo became a vegetarian not so much for spiritual reasons, like Paul and George, but because of health problems. John had toyed with vegetarianism in the sixties, but he always ended up eating meat, one way or another.

4) John Lennon once almost beat a man to death: Rumors that John Lennon was gay were swirling when things came to a head with a disc jockey the Beatles knew named Bob Wooler.  Wooler was a very close friend of the Beatles and had introduced them on stage some 300 times.  This incident happened at Paul’s 21st birthday party, on June 18, 1963.  At the party, Wooler was joking around with John and said (with heavy gay intimations): “Come on John, what really happened with you and Brian? Everybody knows anyway, so tell us.”  John had been heavily drinking that night and Lennon was a notorious “bad drunk”.  In a blind rage, John proceeded to beat the stuffing out of a very surprised Bob Wooler, literally kicking him repeatedly in the ribs as he lay on the ground in a bloody heap.  According to John, the only reason he actually stopped the savage beating was because, “I realized I was actually going to kill him…  I just saw it like a screen. If I hit him once more, that’s really going to be it. I really got shocked and for the first time thought: ‘I can kill this guy.’”  Wooler was rushed to the hospital and given treatment for a variety of things, including broken ribs.  Luckily for John Lennon- and the Beatles’ future amazing run- Wooler survived the ordeal.

5) He hated his own voice:  Incredibly, one of the greatest singers in the history of rock music, John Lennon hated his own voice and loved to double-track his records. He would often ask the Beatles producer, George Martin, to cover the sound of his voice: “Can’t you smother it with tomato ketchup or something?”

6) He was dissatisfied with all the Beatles’ records: Dining with his former producer, George Martin, one night years after the band had split up, John revealed to Martin that he’d like to re-record every Beatles song. Completely amazed, Martin asked him, “Even ‘Strawberry fields’?”  His response, “Especially ‘Strawberry Fields'”.

7) He loved to play “Monopoly”: During his Beatle days, John was a devout Monopoly player. He had his own Monopoly set he’d bring with him and often played in his hotel room or on planes. He was crazy about the properties “Boardwalk” and “Park Place”.  He reportedly didn’t generally care too much if he lost the game, as long as he had “Boardwalk” and “Park Place” in his possession.

8) He sometimes slept in a coffin: According to Allan Williams, an early manager for the Beatles, John liked to sleep in an old coffin. Williams had the old coffin on the premises of his coffee bar “The Jacaranda”. As a gag, John would frequently nap in it.

9) The best lyric Lennon ever wrote: A friend once asked John the best lyric he ever wrote.  “That’s easy”, replied Lennon, “All you need is love”.


Lennon and the man who would soon murder him

10) The last photograph of John Lennon: In this last photo of John Lennon while he was alive, he was signing an album to the person who was to assassinate him a few hours later. John obligingly signed a copy of his latest album “Double Fantasy” on the morning of his death for his killer. Later that same day, John returned from the recording studio and was gunned down by Mark David Chapman. Morbidly, a photographer later sneaked into the morgue containing John’s body and snapped a photo of it before it was cremated. John’s body was cremated the day after his assassination. Yoko Ono has never revealed the whereabouts of the ashes or what she did with them.

11) John was originally supposed to sing lead on the Beatles’ first record “Love Me Do” (1962): John sang lead on a great majority of the early Beatle records, but Paul took the lead on their very first record. The lead was originally supposed to be John’s, but because John had to play the harmonica, it was instead given to Paul.

12) The last time he saw Paul was April 24, 1976: Paul was visiting him at John’s New York apartment. They were watching “Saturday Night Live” together when producer Lorne Michaels, as a gag, offered the Beatles $3,000 to come on the show. John and Paul almost took a cab to the show, but finally decided against it. (It would have been one of the great moments in television history. Too bad!)

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  • Here’s another interesting fact. He also admitted later in his life that he abused his wives and also emotionally abused his son.

    • B.S. Nobody ever reported this and you, a nobody, has uncovered it and revealed it. Sure. That’s it for your 15 seconds of fame.

      • John actually did admit to beating Cynthia, and other women. “I was a hitter. I couldn’t express myself so I hit. I fought men and hit women.” That’s a quote from John’s interview with Playboy magazine.
        He wrote about it in “Getting Better” as well. And while John never really admitted anything about Julian, there are countless numbers of interviews where Julian talks about his father’s abuse.

        • Virginia Abreu de Paula

          However, it was Paul who wrote the lyrics for It’s getting all the time.” He might have helped as they were partners. But that is a Paul’s song.

  • Actually Billy is correct: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2012/05/john-lennon-getting-better/
    Jullian Lennon decided not to become a dad because of the way John Lennon treated him. John Lennon was no saint.

    • He allegedly also beat up Stuart Sutcliffe .
      This claim is consistent with other better documented incidents.

  • In `The Other Side of Lennon` by Sandra Shevey we discuss the nasty side of the star. He almost killed Bob Wooler when Wooler accused him early on of being Gay. Lennon is also reputed to have kicked Sutcliffe down the stairs in a Gay rag.A blood clot killed Stuart. And…he is mooted to have bashed Epstein to death when the manager admitted having `sold` the contract for the Beatles to Robert Stigwood.

    So was Epstein Gay? No. Was Lennon Gay? Yes!

    Should Epstein have been allowed to be what he damn pleased without bullying and blackmail? Yes! Was Lennon allowed to be what he pleased without bullying, blackmail and whilst the whole of the world covered up for him? Seems yes!

    Why one thing for the Jew and another for the gentile?

  • I just discovered what could have been an awesome new website here and an article I was really interested to read. But your damn PHILIPS advertisement opened all over the text and wouldn’t go away, even after I had mindlessly clicked on the link… so now I leave forever and hope you have a little pow-wow in the office about how, although advertising revenues are important to you, should they be so important that you alienate new readers permanently within five minutes of them arriving at your site. Good luck.

    • Daven Hiskey

      @Bobby Fields: That should never happen. But, unfortunately, advertisers don’t always play nice and there is also the issue of there being numerous devices and browsers out there these days, not all of which conform to the same standards. Which one is the problem here, I’m not sure. I have been getting occasional emails the last few months about the left ad unit sometimes moving over blocking some of the content. To date, I’ve not yet been able to replicate the problem on an iPhone, a couple different androids, an iPad, two different android tablets, or various versions of Firefox, IE, or Chrome. I know it is sometimes happening. But to fix it, I need to be able to replicate the problem, which as you see is no simple task. 🙂

  • this article is way too politcally correct. John Lennon beat both his wives regularly, first neglected then emotionally abused his son. Do as John Lennon does? that would make the world a terrible place….

    • Virginia Abreu de Paula

      Regularly? I wonder how do you know about it unless you were close to him. I don’t think you were so close. He admitted he hit Cynthia one single time. Regularly…you must hate the guy to came with this revelation without any proof.

  • You might want to correct an error in fact # 10. John Lennon signed the copy of Double Fantasy for Chapman on the EVENING of his death, not the morning of his death. The picture was taken at approximately 5:00 p.m. If you look at the picture, you will see that the background is night time.

  • It wasn’t an Aston-Martin that John crashed in Scotland – it was an Austin Maxi. Makes me wonder what else is incorrect here…

  • I love the beatles, and I love john lennon (not that type of way) but you guys are mean, saying mean things to each other, so please be more positive. Just . . . please.

    • Exactly. Peace.

    • GTFO here. Lennon was a Freemason and a Aleister Crowley obsessed satanist who hated Jesus with a passion. His wife yoko was a eugenicist ,who called for depopulation of the world to less than 10% of the number of people there is now. That means she wants to kill everyone including deluded people like you no doubt since you are probably not a wealthy celebrity or a satanist or a Mason,or any of those other things that she respects . I have no doubt at all that Lennon thought exactly the same way as her but just never said these things publicly as yoko did. You are all being taken for the ride of your life if you believe al the bs being fed to you about the Beatles and their peace and love BS!

      • Judging from your comment you sound like you’re an angry person but I’m probably wrong to say that because I don’t know you. It’s the same thing that you’re doing with John and Yoko.

      • can you cite some sources to help bolster your case ie ‘yoko is a eugenicist’ would be enough for starters or the lennon to crowley connection? nothing would surprise me and i’m game to check it out, but need more info.

  • Virginia Abreu de Paula

    I just would like to say that, for us who lived and loved the Beatles, they were a quartet. Ringo, John, Paul and George had the same importance. I also have read in several places they could never do anything without the approval of them four. First time they did it caused a serious problem that let them to split: signing a document acceting Allen Klein as manager. Paul didn’t want but they did it anyway. But before that it never happened, It shows John Lennon was not the leader. They didn’t have a leader. They all had the same rights. John created The Quarrymen. Only that.
    Bob Wooler didn’t ask John to tell them about what happened between him and Brian. He was sure about. He asked if the honey moon in Barcelona was good. So I heard. I can’t confirm it though.

  • Rosamund Forbes

    I think John Lennon was a bit of an enigma sometimes he could be very sarcastic i believe. But at times his caring nature i think he showed in his songs that he wrote like Imagine for instance. As for the Brian Epstein story i don’t know what the truth is there. Brian died so young and so did John one from a drug overdose and John was murdered such sad events to happen. Now the news about Cilla Black has died recently. I am sure that Brian Epstein did his best for the Beatles when he managed them and Cilla Black too. Unfortunately like John Lennon i think that Brian has his demons which sadly lead him to take his own life. People don’t always show the public their true persona the private one sometimes is very different.

  • John Lennon : Just another man who denied Christ for an image of humanist garbage. LOOK at his life and it’s clear how deeply troubled this man truly was. He sang of peace, yet if you will truly look you will see a man whose heart and mind truly knew nothing of peace

    • To Daniel, If you look at the pictures of John in his new york city tee shirt,he’s wearing a cross around his neck,also in the song beautiful boy
      there’s the line before you go to sleep say a little pray.I know the songs imagine and God,but he also stated Iam not anti God, so that blows your comments out the water.John had a very hard life.Think about his child hood,and can you really imagine being 22 years of age having fame,all the money a person needs and not to be able to go for a walk down the street,no freedom.Fame comes at a big price,me personally,they can keep it.Look at Elvis,Michael Jackson and ofcourse the rest of the Beatles.THINK MANBEFORE YOU COMMENT.PEACE