A Review

The Last Days Of John Lennon

by

Fred Seaman

Part III

Review by R.E. Prindle

Key Texts:

Green, John: Dakota Days: The True Story Of John Lennon’s Final Years, 1983, St. Martin’s

Haden-Guest, Anthony: The Last Party, Studio 54, Disco, And The Culture Of The Night,1997, William Morrow

Seaman, Frederic: The Last Days Of John Lennon: A Personal Memoir. 1991, Birch Lane

 

You know, someone once said

That the world’s a stage

And each must play a part.

Fate had me playin’ in love,

You as my sweetheart.

Act one was when we met,

I loved you at first glance,

You read your lines so cleverly

And never missed a cue.

Then came act two.

You seemed to change and acted strange,

And why, I’ll never know.

Honey, you lied when you said you loved me,

Now the stage is bare

And I’m standing here

With emptiness all around.

And if you don’t come back to me

Then make them bring the curtain down.

Are You Lonesome Tonight?

As Recited By Elvis Presley

Crazy People With Guns

     The question here is what was Yoko’s attitude toward her conquest at the beginning of Act Two.  Did she really fall in love with a relatively unsophisticated rube like John Lennon or were her motives more calculated.  Yoko was a Japanese aristocrat which she never let John forget who could trace her ancestry back to the emperors of Japan.  She came from major financial families on both sides.  Her father had an illustrious diplomatic career while having artistic pretensions.  She considered herself as one of the leading lights of the NYC avant garde.  Although I haven’t seen it mentioned she acknowledged the authority of  the reigning avant garde doyen, Marcel Du Champ who actually founded the NYC avant garde at the 1913 Armory Show.  His greatest artistic feat was the display of an actual pissoir as an original work of art.  Yoko followed his example of outre suggestions in her small volume Grapefruit.  Andy Warhol to whom she was attracted can be considered a disciple of Du Champ.  So, in one sense, she was in with the ultimate artistic in group.  She then, had delusions of grandeur while probably looking down on and humouring, John Lennon.

     She used this background to baffle the mind of Lennon.  At the least Lennon was a very unsophisticated young man from what in America would be considered the boondocks.  Bad enough that he grew up in a cultural but vital backwater but barely out of high school he and his band were immersed in the criminal underworld of Hamburg.  They were at one point under the protection of the master criminal of Europe.  This in some of your most impressionable years.

John And Yoko In Better Days

     So, in comparison with Yoko Lennon felt insignificant.  As he said Yoko had all these attributes while what did he have- nothing.  Lennon had actually achieved the impossible but he  had very low self-esteem.  Like many musicians he longed for recognition but was terrified of actual success.  Unlike some bands who can’t get beyond the rehearsal stage Lennon had the drive and ability to realize his stated goal,  to be ‘the toppermost of the poppemost.’  He probably didn’t believe he’d ever make it but when that goal had been reached, in spades, he began to falter not believing his success was deserved.  The first step in rejecting his role was the abandonment of touring.  He then sank into a fairly severe depression not unlike that between 1975 and 1980.  Whether he might then have scotched his role, his intent was aborted by the drive and ambition of partner Paul McCartney who having reached the toppermost of the poppermost intended to stay there, make a career of being no. 1 if possible.  Any conflicts are secondary to Lennon’s feeling of unworthiness.  That was the rock on which the Beatles broke.

     It would have taken Yoko two seconds to analyze Lennon’s psychological state.  That she exploited it is clear from Lennon’s abject servility that she cultivated and most likely induced.

     In point of fact Lennon was everything while Yoko was nothing.  Quite against his will he had made himself  more of a spokesman for his generation than his cross-ocean rival, Bob Dylan.  His social capital was enormous while his fortune, even being grossly mismanaged, was gigantic.  He and the Beatles had created intellectual properties that extended 0ut over fifty years were worth billions.  Yoko managed to finesse this enormous legacy of money and prestige.

     How did she do it?

     Quite simply she hypnotized Lennon.  As Lennon complained to the Tarot reader, John Green, Yoko wanted to play the Count To Ten Game.  Lennon lay his head in her lap while she stroked his hair and counted slowly back from ten to one.  Classic hypnotism.  The essence of hypnotism is the suggestion, more especially the post-hypnotic suggestion.  This means that, while hypnotized it is suggested to the subject that he will perform certain acts at a later date after he has been awakened.  Once the suggestion is in the subject’s mind he will act on the suggestion.  Hypnotism would then explain the seemingly irrational acts of Lennon at the very least from 1973 to 1980 and probably before.  May Pang describes how Yoko hypnotized her to take up with John while in all probability she hypnotized John to run off with May.  Thus John’s reputation was compromised to some extent.

     While Lennon was in LA Yoko was on the phone to him many times a day.  Anyone who has seen the movie, The Manchurian Candidate, realizes the importance of post-hynotic trigger words.  Thus Lennon’s peculiarly destructive and bizarre behavior in LA was probably programmed by Yoko to make him appear weird in comparison to her ‘stability.’

     Thus when he and May Pang returned to New York Yoko made a phone call, John put down the phone, walked out of his and May’s apartment and returned to Yoko.  According to May John said he was essentially made captive while being put through some horrible hypnotic indoctrination for a couple of days by ‘them.’  We don’t know who ‘they’ were except for Yoko but I’m guessing probably she and John Green or perhaps some other occult accomplices of which she had several.

 

Ultra Sophisticated Yoko

    This brings up another important side of Yoko.  She was a devotee of black magic, or, perhaps, magick.  She even recorded a song titled: Yes, I’m A Witch.  Yoko had an extensive library of magical texts that she apparantly studied plus she was into all the great conspiracy theories as is evidenced on one of the multitude of Ono and Lennon sites on the web today.  Imagine Peace for instance is a remarkable site.

     At the basis of her magic was a return to the most primitive form of magical shamanism.  She combined this magical shamanism with her Feminism to found an organization named One On One which is designed to aid female shamans of the Pacific Islands.  Certainly a specialized foundation, one would think.

     In 1974 just prior to John’s return Yoko hired John Green as her Tarot reader cum curioso.  Green was an accomplished magician affiliated with the Santeria religion of the African Yoruba tribe of Nigeria.   He was also familiar with the Caribbean magicians known as curanderas if female and curiosos if male.

     When Yoko and John Green traveled to Colombia SA to barter with Satan for her soul it was necessary for Green to offer his curioso credentials to the curandera which he successfully did.  Thus, to obtain her heart’s desire in 1977 Yoko sold her soul to the Devil, or believed she did which is the same thing.

     The point is that Yoko was thoroughly immersed in hypnotism and magical practices.  Put into practice we have the remarkable incident in John’s immigration hearings.  To ensure success Yoko contacted a Black witch to provide assisstance.  This witch was apparently well versed in the techniques of aromatherapy.  She gave John a package folded in a recondite way that he was to unfold in court in a specified way.  John concealing the folded paper in his lap did so.  He said the courtroom filled with an unpleasant aroma.  the judge asked what that smell was and ordered the windows opened.  John repeated the act the next day after which, he says, the judge’s attitude softened toward him.

      Thus, we have a pattern of Yoko resorting to magical means to gain her ends.

Psychedelic John

      Now, let’s consider Lennon’s attachment to this rather eccentric woman.  Contrary to Yoko’s assertion that she was just so darn cute John had to fall head over heels in love with her, the evidence is that he required a great deal of active persuasion.  Yoko showed up unannounced at his door completely violating the sanctity of  Cynthia’s home.  At one point as John and Cynthia were leaving an event Yoko appeared and got into the car with John and Cynthia.  At the time it was reported that Yoko sat between them but in her memoir, John, Cynthia says that Yoko entered first sitting on her left side.  Yoko sat silently, mysteriously, exiting the car without a word.  A hypnotic technique.

     Yoko bombarded Lennon with cards and letters through the mails including one with the suggestion:  Look at the sky, see a cloud, that cloud is me.  In other words- Je suis partout.  I surround you.

     Thus when Cynthia was gone on vacation Yoko spent the night with John in Cynthia’s house once again violating the sanctity of her private space, displacing her as it were.  Drugs were involved which would have made John more susceptible to hypnotic suggestion.  The fact that the duo recorded ‘Two Virgins’ at this session and John wasn’t revolted at her so-called singing proves he must have been hypnotized to me.

     The fact that he was depressed, overwhelmed by his success, and unhappy in his marriage to Cynthia merely means that he was very susceptible.  Perhaps the turning point in their relationship came with the death of the Beatles’ manager Brian Epstein just the Beatles were leaving for a Transcendental Meditation retreat  in India.

     Up to Epstein’s death the Beatles had had no responsibilities; Epstein had managed all business and monetary matters for them.  Now, bereft of their management the Beatles were cast adrift on their own with disastrous or near disastrous consequences.  In his personal desperation Lennon undoubtedly clung to Yoko Ono as his security blanket and surrogate mother.  Yoko had obtained her goal, she had captured a Beatle and the Beatle’s reputation was nearly that of a secular saint; he was held in religious awe by the Beatles’ fans.

     Yoko exploited her opportunity with brilliance.  As I think, through hypnosis she had John make the attempt to insinuate her into the group as the Fifth Beatle.  Not content with Two Virgins she intended to screech her way through a few Beatles’ side thus attributing their success to herself.  Because of her friendship with the experimental composer, John Cage, she considered herself a better musician than the combined Beatles.  She failed in her attempt to join the boys breaking up the band instead.

     Nothing daunted she decided to exploit John with her astouonding avant garde performance art.  Thus she organized the Bed-In events which were actually successes of sorts.  From there she persuaded John to form the Plastic Ono Band to gain some musical credentials.  Despite sensational packaging the record flopped.

     At this point Yoko decided to return to New York City and reestablish her art connections.  By this time, in my estimation, the avant garde was dead, killed by Andy Warhol and perhaps by diffusion into the general culture by groups like the Beatles.

     At this point, I believe, John became a liability.  Still Yoko was nothing without him.  She wanted to connect up with Andy Warhol but her intro to Warhol was Lennon.  Nevertheless John, Andy and Yoko did become fairly intimate.

     Two years after her return she sent John away with May Pang.  Act Two was well under way.  Then eighteen months later she called him back again.  I have to believe that from ’66 to ’75 John was under hypnotic influence.  That’s about the only thing that explains his bizarre behavior then and certainly is the only thing that can explain his even more bizarre behavior in the five years leading up to his death.

     It seems certain that at least upon Lennon’s return he was being regularly hypnotized by Yoko.  As I mention with my ‘Look at the sky’ reference it is clear to me that Yoko was using hypnotic techniques and suggestion from ’66.  Even the story of John climbing the ladder at the Indica Gallery to look through a magnifying glass to decipher the word ‘Yes’ can be construed as a technique of hypnosis or suggestion.  Climbing the ladder is well know sexual symbolism.

     Unless hypnotized it is difficult for me to understand how a man could emasculate himself so far as to turn his identity over to a woman of whom John Green, himself, advised Lennon to be suspicious.   And Green who read Yoko’s Tarot hundreds of times over those five years would have been able to figure out what Yoko was thinking.  She was unguarded.

     Yoko’s first step in emasculating Lennon was to tell the media that he was withdrawing from the world to become a house husband.  There were few men in the world who didn’t understand that to mean that Lennon had been deballed.  This was also a Feminist revolutionary move to turn the Patriarchy back to the Matriarchy.

    

Lennon Lighting Up

 Having made Lennon ex-communicado the story of his withdrawal from life during this period into clinical depression was also released.  From a careful reading of John Green and Fred Seaman this notion can be disrgarded.  He may have been entering a period of what Dynamic Psychologists call a ‘creative illness’ but he wasn’t just brooding.  He had to have a period to sort out the crowded years from 1958 to 1974 and deal with what must have been some very painful memories.  Keeping the channel button on his remote depressed to let the channels flip thorugh continuously could be construe as an attempt to deal with multitudinous memories flashing through his mind.

     While supposedly in this inert state, Warhol records in his diaries that Lennon while eating lunch at another table in a fashionable eatery came over to Warhol’s table surprising him by laying on the floor by his chair on his back with arms and legs simulating a puppy and panting with his tongue lolling out.  Now, that is lack of self-esteem.

     So his so-called depression was more an attempt to understand the past more than just depressive brooding.  In fact he did get his life organized.  While he claimed he was incapable of writing during this period as his muse had left him, which is to say he had writer’s block, by 1980 he had resolved his problems and was ready to go back to work.  Personally I have to admire the guy for achieving this regeneration.  He had a lot of fortune and misfortune to sort through while coming to terms with being a success he had never hoped to be.

      Now, what was Yoko doing during these five years?

     First, let’s keep track of the various revolutions subsumed under the Warhol umbrella.  Andy was shot by Valerie Solonas in 1969 which effectively shut down Factory #1 although #2 was already in existence.  The seventies were a dull period for Warhol as he recovered his lustre after actually having been declared dead.  The homosexual nightlife was burgeoning however, while reaching a dfinitive point in 1977 when the nightclub Studio 54 was created by Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager.  It was the serendipitous moment for the Homo Revos and Rubell and Schrager hit the groove as sharp as a knife.  The criminal/revolutionary elements working out of Andy’s old Factory had found a new home.  Andy had found a new home; he apparently haunted the place nearly every night of its existence.  A real fixture.

     There’s a very interesting book that was issued in 1997 by Anthony Haden-Guest titled:  The Last Party, Studio 54, Disco And the Culture Of The Night.  The book sank but left traces.  A remainder copy, first edition, can be picked up new for a couple dollars on the internet.  If you’re interested in this topic you should do it.

     As an example of how vile these revolutionaries were conducting, say the sexual revolution, Haden-Guest tells an alarming story.  Now, Studio 54 was in existence only eighteen months before the Feds loaded them into the vans.  I’m sure Rubell and Schrader were not involved directly in this escapade but while Warhol at the Factory was using the Undermen as his foils in ’77 and ’78 some unnamed revolutionaries, perhaps Warhol among them, set out to corrupt the WASP students at prep schools.  This must have been on the drawing boards for some time waiting for the opportunity because there wasn’t much time to act.  The students were fourteen, fifteen and sixteen year olds.  Lists of students were compiled and approached.  Haden-Guest says likely subjects were pointed out by ‘moles’ in the schools.  We all know what moles are from spy novels so already having moles in the schools shows some advanced planning.  What they were doing while waiting for opportunity is a question worth pursuing.

     Now, these decidedly underage kids were enticed to the come to Studio 54, bussed to it, where they were given free admittance as bait to entice other underage children.  At Studio 54 they were systematically debauched with free drinks and free drugs.  The perves then were delivered young boys and girls drunk or on drugs to seduce which was done.

     Many if not most of these kids beca,e drunks and debased drug addicts, heroin and what all.  Haden-Guest draws an astonishing picture.  While Haden-Guest doesn’t say Warhol was one behind this plan to debauch the most priviliged of Young America he leaves room for conjecture.  So, things were getting rough in this toughest of American cities.

     Yoko had set her cap for Warhol.  She cultivated his acquaintance with Lennon as celebrity bait.  She befriended his associate Sam Green who was an art dealer and procurer of desirable legal or illegal items for those with the money.  In 1977, for instance, he was able to procure tickets to the Carter inauguration for himself, John and Yoko.  Sam Green’s associate Bart Gorin also delivered Yoko’s heroin to her.  This is interesting.

     Anthony Haden-Guest in his The Last Party says in his coded way that a major heroin dealer lived in a gothic apartment house on Central Park West, that would be the Dakota.  He calls the dealer The Elfin Queen, that’s a small eccentric woman.  I don’t know how many small eccentric women lived at the Dakota but the specifics do describe Yoko Ono.  The Elfin Queen was also a denizen of Nightworld which would seem to narrow things further.

     Yoko in the late seventies was a heroin addict which is an additional point.  She had her paper delivered daily by Sam Green’s assistant Bart Gorin.  That means that Sam Green was holding.  It is also clear that Yoko only held her daily dose so she was smart enough to have no evidence around.  If this is true there had to be contact with an underworld wholesaler.  Whether that was Sam Green or another buffer to distance themselves or not isn’t known.  It is beyond dispute however that Sam Green was the supplier for Yoko.

     I find little evidence that Yoko was a financial genius who went from John’s current income to 25 million in three years with the usual figure of 150 million being mentioned.  There might have been some sub-rosa dealing. 

     It is also true that Sam Green  was active as an agent obtaining items for Yoko’s various art collection.  He was undoubtedly her gigilo, there being hope for him to replace Lennon after he was shot in 1980.

     Sam Green and John Green were both known to each other while there is some speculation that the Greens collaborated to overcharge Yoko for items.  It may be true but whatever she overpaid was insignficant as in the seventies the prices of all collectibles just sky rocketed.  The 70s was the decade of the collector.

      In ’77 Yoko met Sam Havadtoy while on one of her shopping expeditions who became a fast friend while actually replacing Lennon on the day of his death.

     Now, during John’s absence in ’74 Yoko had tested the waters for her solo screeching and found the temperature tepid.  She still needed John for his reputation as well as his money.  John had her on the short leash of 300 K during his absence which Yoko found irksome.  She now set out to gain control of John’s entire fortune and income.  She secured a Power of Attorney and the legal assumption of his entire identity so that she acted not only in his name but as himself.  I can’t believe Lennon would agree to this, which isn’t to say he didn’t, but I find it more likely he was following a post-hypnotic suggestion.  Now in control of his money and having assumed his identity as well as her own Yoko had little use for him.  As Seaman records during ’79 and ’80 she sent him out to Long Island for long stretches of time and then on a dangerous sea voyage to the Bahamas that almost claimed his life which would have been very fortuitous for Yoko.  John stayed in the Bahamas several months.

     It was there his writer’s block unblocked or, as he might express it, his muse returned and he was able to begin writing again.  Thus, perhaps to Yoko’s surprise, he returned to NYC with a packet of new songs ready to go back into the studio.   Here the plot thickens.

     Yoko had John out of the Dakota for much of 1980.  During that time her relations with both Sam Green and Sam Havadtoy intensified,  so there was a reason John was sent away.  That he was so complaisant to her wishes is truly amazing unless he was controlled through post-hypnotic suggestion.  When John came back from the Bahamas he went into the studio.  At this point Yoko and he were inseparable.  She insisted on alternating songs on the LP- one of his, one of hers.  There was a giveaway there.  One of John’s songs was I’m Losing You followed by Yoko’s I’m Moving On.

      A reading of Seaman’s memoir shows a  Yoko who was inconsiderately entertaining both Sams in a closed room at the studio not only in front of John but the whole band.  It seems clear that that the two song titles were more than relevant.

     Now, by this time Yoko had all the money in her control and possibly in her name and this was legally irrevocable although John could revoke future use of his identity and cancel the POA and possibly regain control of his royalties unless Yoko had also assigned those to herself.  So the day she ‘moved on’ John would be effectively penniless.   If you thought Colonel Parker was the manager from hell Yoko was the topper.    She literally was from hell as she had sold her soul to Satan.

     There remained the matter of popularity.  It seems clear that Yoko thought she had created a mega chart buster, not John.  She sincerely thought that the success of the record would depend on her contributions,  but the record sold well on the basis of Lennon’s reputation alone.  This was a setback for Yoko necessitating a change in procedures.

      In any event Lennon was assassinated by a ‘lone nut’ on December 8, 1980.  John lost Yoko and she moved on.

      The case against Mark Chapman, the man who shot Lennon, would seem to have been open and shut.  Several witnesses saw him shoot Lennon while he quietly laid the gun down and quietly assumed responsibility, never denying it.  Attorney’s wanted to plead insanity but Chapman refused.  As often happens  in ‘lone nut’ assassinations many found the fact inconclusive.  And, indeed, there are reasons to believe that Mark Chapman was just a tool, a pawn in someone’s game.  The question has been, who?  Many people believe Chapman was a Manchurian Candidate hypnotized to commit the murder.  The Manchurian Candidate is a book and movie in which a former American soldier ws given a post-hypnotic code word that activated certain instructions.  The question once again was, who?  Some suggested the government.  There is no clear solution so one can’t rule a Fed hit out but the Ono-Lennon’s quarrel was with the Nixon White House.  The Carter administration was then in office while John and Yoko had wrangled tickets to Carter’s inauguration.  I don’t think the Carter administration probable.

      There is also a sizeable group who believe Yoko herself was involved.  The idea involves more of a how than the government accusation.  What seems clear to doubters is that Chapman seemed to act programmed rather then autonomous.  Before I tackle a probable how let’s review Yoko’s situation before and after the assassination.  There seems to be an incongruous continuity.

      Lennon had been away from the Dakota for much of 1980 returning from the Bahamas mid-year to go into the recording studio.  We know that a close associate of Yoko, Sam Green, was at the very least a conduit for Yoko’s heroin.  Heroin may account for his presence in the Studio and Yoko’s need for a private room.

      She also became close to Sam Havadtoy, another art dealer,  who has the appearance of an enforcer.  Indeed, he moved into the Dakota the day John died where he remained for twenty years.  Shortly after John’s death Havadtoy sent for two Hungarian ‘cooks’ from then Soviet ruled Hungary.  Why Yoko would need two cooks isn’t clear so let us assume that the two were bodyguards or assistant enforcers.

     The peaceable Yoko turned violent after John’s death.  As Fred Seaman records she had a couple of thugs beat him in the attempt to force him to give up John’s diaries.  I would think that peaceable attempts to recover the diaries would have worked just as well on Seaman.

      Yoko had wanted to connect up with Andy Warhol since about 1965.  On her return to NYC in 1971 she cultivated Warhol assiduously but John was in the way and for various reasons she couldn’t just divorce him.  I am convinced her only iinterest in him had been for monetary and publicity reasons.

     Three months after John’s death she offered herself to Andy Warhol.  Warhol’s diary entry for Friday, March 20, 1981, three months after the murder reads:

Andy- Classic Phone Pose

     We had to do our Rex Smith interview, Bob (Colacello) and I, so I decided it was easier to stay uptown because it was going to be at Quo Vadis.  We fell in love with him.  He had the curly Vitas Gerulaitis look but better looking.

      And then we heard a voice say, “Andy!”  It was Yoko Ono.  We were so stunned.  She looked so elegant, like the Duchess of Windsor with her hair back and dark wraparound glasses, and beautiful makeup and Fendi furs and jewelry- an emerald ring with a big ruby in it and Elso Peritte diamond earrings.  So I said that I wanted to call her for lunch and so she gave me her phone number.  It was really strange, a whole new Yoko.

     And all Andy had to do to unify the whole avant garde was to climb that ladder, take the magnifying glass and read out loud one little word- YES.  Some little time later when he thought he might need a woman who could accompany him to parties he did think of Yoko but then nixed the idea.  He’d already been shot once.

     So, not only was there no period of mourning for Yoko but three months after she in effect proposed to the man who she thought of as her dream husband.

     So that is Yoko’s situation in the period  on both sides of John’s death.  His was a convenient murder releasing Yoko to attempt to gratify her secret ambitions.

     Let us assume that Yoko programmed or had Chapman programmed.  Yoko was connected to a number of magical networks that could have located Chapman as a perpetrator.  John Green was a Santeria priest and curioso.  Santeria was functioning all up and down the East Coast and especially in Atlanta where Chapman was from and which he visited before the shooting.  Plus the religion is dispersed around.

     ‘Magic’ had been employed to help John’s immigration problem, apparently provided by a Black witch from Chicago.  Chapman stopped over in Chicago on one of his trips to NYC to dispose of a painting.  Yoko was Japanese, her numerologist was Japanese and Gloria Abe, Chapman’s new wife was Japanese.  Yoko’s One On One Foundation was involved with female Shamanistic magicians from the Pacific Islands that might have included Hawaii so, shall we say, he was mentally unstable which is an aid in hypnotism?

      Thus there are ways Chapman could have been recruited and having been recruited and brought under mind control so that  a telephone call from anywhere in the world could have been used to utter the trigger word.  And then there is the question of where the money came from for Chapman’s frequent air flights especially his flight around the world with several layovers.  He had in excess of two thousand dollars on him at the time of his arrest.

     None of this is conclusive, of course, there is always the chance that Chapman was a ‘lone nut.’  These things do happen.  On the other hand someone who had provided for herself so well and was so prepared to weather the shock must be equally rare.  Those things happen too.

     As Seaman notes, he was more grief stricken than Yoko.  And at the same time Yoko had sold her soul to Satan to obtain desires that were never revealed.  The astonishing coincidence is the Satanic stuff took place not only in the Dakota of Rosemary’s Baby but on the same floor and in some of the same rooms.  An early candidate for the mother of Satan’s baby threw herself from the seventh floor window landing on nearly the spot where Lennon was shot.  Very eerie, almost Rosemary’s Baby II.

     

Fred Seaman then

 

A Review

John

by

Cynthia Lennon

One Giant Step For Somebody

Review by R.E. Prindle

Lennon, Cythia: John, Three Rivers Press,  2005

Remember what the door knob said…

–Grace Slick

We built this city on Rock and Roll.

–Jefferson Starship

If you want to be a girl of mine

You’d better bring it with you when you come,

–Trad.

John and Cynthia- Sometime In Liverpool

     Cynthia Lennon’s autobiography of her life with John Lennon opens the door to a number of possibilities of which I’ll explore one, at least, here.

     Let’s begin with Lonnie Donegan’s 1955 hit The Rock Island Line.  Lonnie was the originator of his own genre- Skiffle Music.  Skiffle was all the rage in the British world from England to Australia to New Zealand while passing very lightly over the States except for the fortunate few of which I was one.  Rock Island Line was a major hit in the US though.

     Lonnie, may he rest in peace, was also the originator of the Big Beat.  Of course Lennon and most of the young English rockers studied at Lonnie’s feet.  The first band Lennon formed, the Quarrymen, was a Skiffle band.  That was back in the fifties before the second stage of the big change kicked off.  The first stage began about 1950 with Johnny Ray and his song Cry.

     Eisenhower had the world pretty well organized in 1960 before John Kennedy stole the baton from the intended successor, Richard Nixon.  With the accession of Kennedy the American personality or identity, such as it was, began to disintegrate- I mean in the psychological sense.

     The Celts tried to establish Kennedy as the second coming of King Arthur and his Camelot.  Not the smartest thing they could have done; a couple bullets fired in Dallas on November 22, 1963 put a period to that dream.  By the then the sixties were fairly launched about to begin in earnest in January of 1964 when Lennon’s next group, the Beatles, hit.

     The Beatles began as a Big Beat band rooted in the fifties.  Seized by the avant garde they were made the avatar of the sixties.  In their own way they launched the sixties although the makins’ were already out of the can.  Kennedy was shot almost in December and in January the Fab Four washed his memory out on the Ed Sullivan Show.  The Kennedy assassination was so then, then.  The Beatles were NOW.  IS in capital letters.

     While the Beatles were revamping fifties music they edged into the future with modified Prince Valiant haircuts and collarless suit jackets.  They were then NEW emerging into a brave new world.

     Almost at the beginning of 1960 the art world was shaken by the emergence of Pop Art.  Jasper Johns, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Indiana, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Rauschenberg and especially Andy Warhol with his Campbell’s Soup Can set the sixties on its ear.  On

Premier example of Pop Art

the film scene the James Bond series with its new sensibility began.  Bond also was a revelation portending changes with unintended consequences.

     Pop Art would figure signficantly in Cynthia Lennon’s life in a few years when one of its more laughable practitioners, Yoko Ono, would step into her life and filch her husband from her.  In fact Pop Art would be inextricably linked with the record industry.  All the pop motifs would find their way onto record covers with increasing frequency.  Tiny Alice would have a cover that opened like a match book.  Talking Head’s colored disc would even become a happening designed by Rauschenberg himself.  The burgeoning poster business would find its way into record sleeves.  Astonishing packages never seen before in the record business although perhaps anticipated by the experimental ESP label of NYC.  Some interesting stuff.   Perhaps Milton Glaser’s poster of Bob Dylan could run for the distinction of the most popular poster design of the whole era.  It was innovation itself at the time although not quite so fresh today.

     Now, all this was happening so fast and from so many directions that it was impossible to get it all or even keep up on what you did get; after all people had lives to live.

     In the San Francisco Bay Area where I was during the sixties the Scene was especially heavy.  I wasn’t in the thick of things but a little off to the side.  Thus while the UC Berkeley Free Speech Brouhaha took center stage in the East Bay, Ken Kesey, the Merry Pranksters and the Acid Tests were simmering on the Peninsula, but actually invading the middle class especially at Stanford and UC Berkeley.  The San Fransciso Mime Troupe was very important in the early stages while Bill Graham was commercializing the Trips Festival with his Fillmore shows and Chet Helms was organizing the Avalon Ballroom out at the beach.  The posters for the ballrooms which epitomized the psychedelic was the first inkling I had that something ‘new’ was happening.  I don’t know how quick on the uptake I was  but the first inkling of New York Pop I had was 1966-67 when I opened a poster store soon to be a record store.

     LA, always commercial, would nevertheless provide the great Ron Cobb political cartoons for the LA Free Press one of the best of the Hippie papers soon to degenerate into porn as did the Berkeley Barb and all the rest.  R. Crumb in San Francisco became the king of Hippie porn which characterized the movement from then on.  The scene was then set for George and Pattie Harrison’s famous descent on the Haight-Ashbury that disappointed them so.

     This brief sketch only contains a few of the highlights of the period.  It was into this world that John and Cynthia Lennon stepped unprepared.  Both Cynthia and John came from a background of very low expectations.  Cynthia’s dreams were very modest while per her John’s dreaming was no bigger than reaching the tops of the pops in England.

     Indeed the much touted German clubs showed no promise of a future whatever.  Essentially playing in brothels in Hamburg one wonders what the ‘lads’ were thinking of the whole process.  The wonder is that they paid enough attention to hone their skills.  One of those making lemonade from lemons situations.

     Only the greatest good luck showed them to success and fortune.  They would have labored in the vineyard for a while and then drifted off into jobs but for the fact that an entrepreneurial romantic by the name of Brian Epstein saw them as the vehicle to realize his own dreams.  He had the direction and energy to galvanize their careers.  Still they were rejected by all the labels until a producer, George Martin, apparently heard what the rest of the world would hear and agreed to record them.  It was then that the unbelievable happened elevating the Beatles into the most successful pop group ever.  It was success far beyond their imaginations.  With that success came challenges that neither John nor Cynthia could meet.  The fact that they failed is no reflection on either one; they came from very low expectations and having fallen down the rabbit hole they were slightly unprepared.  ‘One side makes you larger, the other side makes you smaller.’

     To this time in their lives neither had even eaten at anything other than the English equivalent of McDonald’s, fish and chips or whatever.  Now in one great step they were introduced into the haut ton by their manager Brian Epstein.  Cynthia leads us to believe that Epstein gave special attention to John over the other ‘lads.’  As Epstein was a homosexual and as other sources, Peter Brown, Goldman actually state that Epstein seduced Lennon he obviously had a crush on John seeking to mold him in his own image.  Indeed, John may have been his incentive for taking the Beatles on.  Lust at first sight.

     John had an attractive flip attitude that left the impression that he was much better educated than he was.  Actually he left Art School, already a step down from the top,  flunked out or whatever preferring to devote himself to his guitar chords.  Most of the rockers were in the same situation.  It’s amazing that their fans looked to them for salvation.  This was tragic, because the generation invested all their hopes and dreams in these muscians attributing universal knowledge and genius to them, each and everyone.  While they all did changes on certain political and social themes there was an appearance of ‘deep’ knowledge.  Being anti-pollution was a badge of authority.  Grace Slick of the Jefferson Airplane made the mistake if, one hopes, jesting that one should never trust anyone over thirty; this while she, John and others were about twenty-nine.

     The phrase stuck.  Those under thirty trusted these youthful, perhaps well-meaning rock stars.  Being somewhat older at the time I could only see some very ordinary boys and girls who were just youthful wiseacres as we all were in that phase of our journey through life.  Give me a break.

     The most revered of all were the three Beatles John, Paul and George with Ringo thought of more as the court jester.  John seemed to take his role most seriously as the guru of the generation, especially after he abandoned Cynthia for, spare me, the psychotic Yoko Ono.

     Her abandonment by John for Yoko Ono is of course the most traumatic incident in her story.  One can only commiserate with Cynthia.  Then one has to search for reasons why; there was certainly no physical attraction there.  Lennon did release a solo album called Mind Games so perhaps the best place to look is the mental.  Lennon’s success must have placed great stresses of various kinds on him.  The transition from a fair degree of poverty to one of a very large income to great wealth under the management of Yoko Ono would be psychologically unsettling in itself.  Cynthia was unable to transit from poverty to wealth always remaining a lower middle class haus frau while John appears to have lacked the social climbing instincts of, say, Mick Jagger.

     Musicians in general are held in very low esteem by the social elite so without unbounded desire and chutzpah, an ability to endure slights of the most painful kind it is highly unlikely that a musician would ever find acceptance in society.  The aristocrats, Marrianne Faithfull describes as associating with Jagger appear to me to be more of the Black Sheep variety.  So, Lennon may have been experiencing some frustration at that level.

     At the same time there are numerous flatterers who are adept at putting ideas of omnipotence into your head not only intimating but saying that you are godlike.  Even though one rejects the notion on the conscious level still a feeling of super powers creeps into your subliminal mind.  One feels invulnerable, that one can do what’s never been done, that one can do drugs with impunity.  There was never a time when the availability of drugs was ever greater or more socially acceptable.

     At the time rumors abounded which have since turned into facts.  During the Kennedy administration there was one Dr. Feelgood operating in New York to whom the social elite went for their drugs.  His name was Dr. Max Jacobson and he was your friendly amphetamine pusher.  His speed cocktails were extraordinary and they lasted for days.   It’s comforting to know that President John F. Kennedy was amphetamine fueled while he was making those difficult international decisions- like Cuba.  Nothing like having an A-man on the job.  He wasn’t alone, VP Lyndon Johnson, followed in his footsteps into the office of Dr. Feelgood.  He would have found his place at the end of the line of the NYC elite.

     One person who took the good doctor’s prescription said that he went blind for three days staying high for several.  Max was the economic type, dirty needles too.

     At the same time Dr. Timothy Leary was sending everyone from prison inmates to Beat poet Allen Ginsberg tripping into inner space with his free handed distribution of LSD.  Kennedy was involved in that too.

     Prior to their arrival for the Sullivan show we are led to believe that the Mop Tops had only used pep pills in Hamburg to fuel their twelve hour sets.  We are told that Bob Dylan was the one who turned them on to La Cucuracha, the most mild of the intoxicants.  From there the boys graduated to LSD through spiked drinks or food.

     Just as Harrison’s wife, Patti, records a spiked introduction to LSD so does Cynthia Lennon.  Cynthia quite properly was revolted by drugs having no use for them.  John was quite the opposite.  He embraced LSD apparently ingesting regularly for long periods of time.  As he would describe it, thousands of trips.  At that point in my estimation the marriage was over.  There is nothing for which Cynthia has to reproach herself except for her small divorce settlement.  Nothing disintegrates the personality like drugs.

The Ghost In The Machine- Albert Hofmann

     The drug influence was followed by a change in their music patterned after Dylan.  When I first heard the Rubber Soul album I found it extremely noisy and unpleasant.  This album was probably influenced by the Band’s playing behind Dylan on the ’65-’66 tour or perhaps the Bringing It All Back Home and Highway ’61 albums.  It seems p;robable to me that the song Norwegian Wood commemorated  Dylan’s turning them on to marijuana.  The girl obviously represents Dylan.

      Succeeding albums would aim for a ‘heavier’ feel with more social significance.  As Lennon said in his ’80 Playboy interview, I Am The Walrus was written in imitation of Dylan.

     The cover of Rubber Soul was traditional uninfluenced by pop art trends.  The succeeding cover in the US, the famous ‘Butcher’ cover would be widely interpreted in the US as a comment on the Viet Nam War.  It may have been meant as a pun- prime cuts of  both meat and record tracks, but I don’t know.  Whether there was a Pop Art influence isn’t clear.

     The cover for the following Revolver by Klaus Voorman seems to indicate an awareness of Pop.  For a band that was thought to be on the cutting edge of everything there are only two covers very avant garde with neither being very satisfying to me.

Acid Art- Victor Vasarely

     Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band that follows Revolver is a complete Pop Art package.  A bizarre and macabre conception it does succeed.  The grave in the foreground with the floral Beatles is chilling, perhaps a presage of the break up of the band.  As Dylan said:  If you’re not busy being born you’re busy dying.’   The Beatles are pictured in dead black and white looking down mournfully on their grave while the newly born Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band stand front and center in vibrant living color.  Obviously the one has risen from the other.

     Behind the band are row on row of ‘ancestors’ or, as was commonly assumed, influences.  In fact members of the band contributed only a few of the names while the rest were contributed by others.  Dylan is certainly among the pictures.  The album comes complete with a childhood toy, a sheet of cut outs, making a complete Pop Art package.  They could have had a designed inner sleeve but they overlooked that.  Peter Blake, the main designer, is known as a Pop Artist.

     The musical content follows the downer social significance motif with aural pyrotechnics such as had not been heard on record before.  The release, as everyone is aware, was a complete smash, but it went beyond smash into realms not achieved until Michael Jackson’s Thriller.  Thriller failed to excite as did Sgt. Peppers.  That summer of ’67 was literally a surround of Sgt. Peppers.  It was almost the only record anyone played.  The Beatles easily trumped Dylan’s Blonde On Blonde  of the summer of  ’66.

     The rest of the Beatles’  covers are pedestrian.  The White LP probably influenced by One was trite at the time.

     Cynthia seems to lack all understanding of what tremendous pressures the very unstable Lennon was subjected to , how his mind was being affected by adulation from the fans and respect from the world at large.  Kid me, being named one of the three most influential men in the world wouldn’t have inflated the head of a Liverpool loser?  My god, the Beatles even sung ‘I’m a loser.’  I couldn’t believe anyhone would sing such a song much less the Beatles who were clearly winners.  How does one endure thinking of oneself as a loser on one hand and one of the most influential men in the world on the other?

     At the same time that Lennon was enlarged Cynthia shrunk into the Liverpool realities of her youth.  The couple had a mansion but unfamiliar with so much space Cynthia preferred to live in one small room!  Clearly she was not equal to the demands of her situation.

     The situation became critical when Lennon began mass consumption of drugs, including heroin, which Cynthia correctly declined to do while at the same time the poisonous Yoko Ono injected herself into Lennon’s life.  There was no hope for Cynthia.  Yoko Ono was a walking disaster looking for a place to happen- and then there was John.

Yoko Ono- Single Fantasy

     Quite frankly Yoko Ono’s ‘career’ was going nowhere.  Born in 1933 she was 33 in 1966 when she began her assault on John who was 25.

     The sexual dynamic is that Lennon seemed to prefer older women than himself having a masochistic submission impulse.  Cynthia herself was a year older.  She too apparently sought security in younger men.  Her second husband was two years younger and her third six.  She seemed to lack the dominating impulse to make such marriages work.  Ono had it in spades.

     While John was by this time psychotic, Ono had been so from childhood, in addition she seems to suffer from extreme cognitive dissonance.  Ono got the rock critic Robert Palmer to shill for her in her 1992 release, Onobox.  In the essay Palmer states:

     It is quite likely that having John Lennon fall in love with her was the worst thing that could have happened to Yoko Ono’s career as an artist.

     Notice the lack of mention of falling in love with Lennon.  This was written, I almost said, dictated to Palmer, in 1992 twelve years after Lennon’s death.  No serious critic could have written that line so one must assume that it was dictated by Ono herself.  The line shows how far she has distanced herself from reality.

     Ono was in fact, a poor little rich girl.  As a woman she felt inferior to the male writing such pieces as ‘Woman Is The Nigger Of The World.’   Once again cognitive dissonance.  Yoko Ono was never in the position of being  ‘a nigger in the world.’  It is true that her father advised her against attempting composing believing that women didn’t make good composers.  How wrong was he, hey?  Ono milked every man she was ever with before actually going into the dairy business herself.  Secondly, having chosen to enter the Western world as an Asian she places her artistic neglect on the twin facts that he is a woman and an Asian.  It never occurs to her that her art is unpleasing.

     As an artist, whether woman or not, Asian or not, she had nothing to offer the art loving peoples of the world.  In this increasingly globalized world of the sixties being Asian meant nothing while being a woman held no one with talent back.  Indeed, male artists were increasingly being suppressed in favor of women in all the arts.  If all girl rock bands isn’t an oxymoron I don’t know what is.

     By her own admission she thought she was an influential person in the New York City art world of the early sixties after an apprenticeship of one year even gaining  ‘an international reputation.’  As she told May Pang:  I was famous before I met John.  So, one asks how does one reconcile her imagined great success with the feeling of being held back as an Asian and woman?

      She rented a loft for fifty dollars a month which she coyly implies that as a starving artist the money was not easy to find.  Well, Daddy was only a phone call away, she should have reached out and touched him.  You can be sure he wasn’t going to let his little girl starve.  By comparison I was paying 125.00 a month for an apartment in the Bay Area.  I think we can dismiss the impoverished struggling artist scenario as so much more cognitive dissonance.

     Ono spread herself pretty thin apparently attempting to cover all aspects of the avant garde.  She’s keen on belonging to the avant garde.  In music she patterned herself after John Cage and that weird contemporary ‘classical music’ approach with perhaps more than a nod to the early electronic composers such as Robert Maxwell who she mentions.  She began her career in 1969 between the end of the Absract Expression mode and the beginningof the Pop movement so she was too late for the one and too early for the other.  She and Lennon would try to rectify this in 1971 by doing obeisance to the Pop guru, Andy Warhol.

     In 1961 she threw a party and was devastated that a snow storm discouraged the uptown crowd she had invited from coming.  At least she said there was a snow storm.  This may be another instance of cognitive dissonance.  As she was an actual nobody she had no reason to expect society people to attend, snow storm or no snow storm.   Nevertheless she was devastated, leaving town for Japan shortly thereafter.  One may question where she obtained the fare for that flight when she had difficulty of meeting a fifty dollar rent bill.

     In Japan she acquired her first husband simultaneously being committed to an insane asylum.  As difficult as it may be to believe, her  soon to be second husband, Tony Cox, heard these marvelous things about Ono in NYC deciding to fly to Japan to look her up.  He found her thoroughly doped staggering around the halls of the asylum.  He succeeded in getting her released then he, Ono and her first husband formed a menage a trois.  The first husband wisely was the first to leave so Cox claimed the prize and the couple returned to NYC in 1964 so she is having an eventful four years.  Shortly after their arrival they pulled up stakes and headed further East to London.  Of the move Ono says:

     I thought (the) avant garde world in New York was still very exciting but that it was starting to become an institution in itself, and there were rules and regulations in an invisible way, and I just wanted to get out of it.  I never considered myself a member of any group.  I was just doing my own thing.

     That is just another way of saying that the art scene was a cliquish group in its terminal stages that was difficult or impossible to break into so unable to do so Ono was ‘just doing her own thing.’  It might be noted however that the NYC art scene was or was in becoming a nearly totally homosexual affair.  At any rate we have evidence of sour grapes- I never considered myself a member of any group.  And the result of rejection-  I was just doing my own thing.

     After her rejection she ‘composed’ a musical piece called Wall Piece For Orchestra in which she knelt on a stage and repeatedly banged her heard on the floor.  Today that would be called ‘acting out.’

     Off to new worlds to conquer in London and at the Indica Gallery of John Dunbar, the resident ‘head’ art gallery.  Now, at this point she ‘ruined her career’ by pursuing John Lennon until he caught her.  I imagine that she had been shrewdly observing his career and undoubtedly came to the psychological conclusion that he was a dependent personality who could be easily manipulated by the older maternal type with the right touch.  That John Lennon could be made dependent on this woman eight years his senior is proof positive.  Indeed, John even referred to her as Mother.

     Cynthia for whom the role was impossible correctly assessed the situation noting the influence of Lennon’s Aunt Mimi who brought him up.  Ono courted Lennon, interfering directly in his marriage.  Ono was quite willing to drug herself along with Lennon so that both were heroin addicts.  Ono thus established a sado-masochistic control over Lennon that Cynthia had no chance of breaking.

     Rather than ruining Ono’s career the ‘third most influential man’ in the world gave her a stage on which to perform that she could never have found on her own.  She now considered herself a collaborator with the Beatles.  The injection of the Cage and Maxwell garbage combined with Lennon’s erratic behavior produced the nonsense of Revolution #9 on the White Album.

     Lennon on drugs and under the influenceof Ono, who had her motives, according to Dire Corrector’s blog quoting the biographer of Paul McCartney, Many Years From Now, says:

     The meditation had essentially precipitated a nervous breakdnown which was not helped by John’s tremendous drug intake.  On May 18, 1966 he summoned a meeting of the Beatles at Apple and announced to them that he was Jesus Christ…the night after he told the other Beatles that he was the Savior, he finally called Yoko Ono and told her to come over.

     Quite obviously Lennon was either teetering on the brink or had fallen over the edge.   If he hadn’t broken with Cynthia by this time it is quite clear that apart from a certain inappropriateness of being wed to the Savior she was quite innocent of causing the break in any manner and should have a clear conscience.

     Lennon’s state of mind would explain the insensitive manner in which he broke with Cynthia and its aftermath.  The man must not have been in his right mind.  While easing Cynthia out was relatively easy, from Ono’s end Tony Cox to whom she was still married was not such a simple matter.  One wonders why he would fight so hard to keep a women who was so psychotic.  Perhaps it was their daughter who he later took into hiding to keep her away from Ono.  Justly so, it seems.

     At any rate by ’69 Ono and Lennon were free to marry.  Definitely by this point Lennon had all but surrendered his identity to Ono.  She was now in possession of the reputation of one of the three most influential men in the world.  Blending her identity with his she was about to become hermaphroditic.  Perhaps Lennon was overawed by her avant garde credentials, such as they were, as well as whatever passed for her musical sensibilities.

     She became Yoko Ono Lennon while he legally changed his name to John Ono Lennon so they both became Ono Lennons.  After a number of happenings which one must believe were entirely Ono’s conceptions, such as the ‘bed in’ in Holland and the organization of the Plastic Ono Band, the pair settled in New York in an apartment building known as the Dakota.  The Dakota was a connection to Ono’s past fulfilling an old desire to surpass those uptown types who she felt had slighted her.

     In that connection also the cover of the Plastic Ono Band is a fulfillment of an old desire of Ono’s.  While a child she witnessed the fire bombing of Tokyo in the US attempt to bring an end to the war.  The blue sky was obliterated by the billowing clouds of smoke.  While she didn’t witness Hiroshima yet she imagined the same sky as that over Tokyo.   She then developed a blue sky obsession.  If you notice the cover of the Plastic Ono Band is just a blue sky.  One assumes then that Ono’s plans were coming together.

     The NYC art world of 1960-’61 had shifted totally, the Abstract Expressionists she had tried to piggyback on were gone having been replaced by Pop Art of which Andy Warhol was the reigning doyen.  If the Abstract Expressionists had been exclusive Warhol was nothing if not inclusive.  He worshipped celebrities and Lennon was the number one celebrity.  Himself a groupie and maximum social climber he welcomed an association with the Onos.  For Yoko Ono the association with the leaderof the NYC art scene was her dream come true.  Nothing but blue skies from now on.

     In the accompanying picture you will notice that Warhol is seated in between a standing Yoko Ono with one hand on her right tit while his hand is on a drugged out looking John Ono with his hand on Warhol’s crotch.  The symbolism is quite clear.  The standing Yoko

The transfer of power.

 is the master of two emasculated males who happen to be two of the most influential men in the world.  She ain’t no nigger no more, Maggie’s Farm is a thing of the past, yes, men are now niggers in relation to herself.  Warhol as an artist takes precedence over the disposable oafish John Ono.  Yoko is tallest and standing, Warhol is second tallest and sitting while the now disposable John is lowest, lying on his back.  The future is clear.  Study John’s face; study all three faces.

     The sexually besotted John Ono has surrendered his entire identity even as a musician allowing Yoko Ono to usurp his place by putting out those horrid hideous LP musical montrosities.  Robert Palmer aside, with song titles reminiscent of her head bashing days:  What A Bastard The World Is, I Felt Like Smashing My Face In A Glass Window,  Woman Of Salem (Witches), Coffin Car, Hell In Paradise and Walking On Thin Ice.  Clearly this woman had an unsettled, disturbed mind.

      Having usuped Lennon’s role and identity he became expendable.  Her problem now was to transfer his past and his wealth to herself thereby becoming Yoko-John Ono, Double Fantasy.  Two fantasies melding into her one personality.

     John Ono’s finances were, of course, in complete disorder.   As Yoko was soon to show billions of dollars were disappearing down a sink hole.  She rapidly organized his finances turning his money green.  Within short order the Onos were worth a hundred million or so which she would swell to a billion or more after John’s death.

     I imagine it was fairly easy to have John Ono give her a power of attorney, indeed he forked over his identity allowing her to function in his stead as himself.  An awesome abdication.  A POA would negate the need for a will, and indeed having made herself not only co-owner of John’s assets as well as his identity Yoko Ono would merely acquire full ownership leaving no assets to be willed.  Indeed, she could have turned him out penniless at any time.  When Cynthia was clamoring for a reading of the will she was wasting her breath; if a will existed, unlikely in itself, there would have been no assets to bequeath.

     Yoko Ono having now incorporated John Ono’s reputation and identity into her own had also incorporated the assets and with the assets the legacy of all copyrights held by John Lennon as the double fantasy melded into one fantasy.  The only obstacle to Yoko’s apotheosis  into man-woman was John himself as he was alive.  However John was only thirty-five.  To wait thirty-five years or more with a man she didn’t love or even like would be unbearable.  Some hard thinking was in order.

     She manipulated the poor dolt into thinking he was a boorish oaf who needed to go off to get himself together.  Rather than just sending him off she chose an employee, May Pang, an Asian like herself, to be John’s consort while away.

     In reading May Pang’s book, Loving John, it becomes clear that Yoko Ono was a master hypnotist.  She knew how to make suggestions and have people act on them.  Acccording to Pang she fixed an hypnotic glare on one, assuming an authoritative posture while intoning her suggestion.  She had the reputation of always getting her way.

     Of course her version of what happened is different than Pang’s.  Yoko having suggested she go  off with John, the act was soon consummated.  Pang insists she and John were in love, yet a year and a half later when Yoko called John back he came running.

     Thus, from 1975 to Double Fantasy in 1980 Yoko and John Ono were out of public life living as a double fantasy of Howard Hughes.  Then in 1980 Mark Chapman became the man who shot John Lennon.  There have been speculations that Chapman was hypnotized when he committed his deed.  Conspiracy theories therefore have sprung up.

     One must ask who the death of John Lennon benefited.  Two possible people.  Yoko One on one hand and possibly Chapman on the other.  On the one hand Yoko Ono achieved the psychotic desire to escape being the ‘nigger of the world’ by becoming John Ono Lennon while physically remaining the sweet little girl she had been before the fire bombing of Tokyo.  She was unable to manage the memory of that transformative experience.  In her mind, then, she became the prominent artist-musician of the world.

     I don’t believe the government had anything to do with the assassination.

     As we know Yoko Ono was a master hypnotist; the question is how did she find Mark Chapman and how did she hypnotize him?

     Earlier in the day Chapman had approached Lennon for an autograph.  He can be seen worshipfully  smiling beside his hero in the picture.  There appears to be no indication he meant to harm Lennon.  He might easily have shot him point blank at the time, yet when he came back in the afternoon with a voice in his head insistently saying:  Do it. Do it. Do it. he gunned his hero down.

     At the time Yoko Ono had dropped a few steps behind John.  In similar murder attempts, people step away from the intended victim so as not to be caught in the line of fire.  This may have been the case with Yoko.

     Certainly Yoko is opposed to Chapman’s release from prison even though he has fulfilled the twenty year requirement of twenty to life.  I doubt if he is a threat to society however he may be a threat to Yoko Ono if he were to remember or reveal the details leading up to his shooting of John Ono Lennon.

     Of course, I don’t know why Chapman shot but I do know that Yoko Ono Lennon was the sole beneficiary.  She left Cynthia holding the bag while she realized her double fantasy.

 

Double Fantasy- Yoko Looking Over John's Granny Glasses

 

A Review

Wonderful Tonight:

George Harrison, Eric Clapton. And Me

by

Pattie Boyd

Review by R.E. Prindle

Boyd, Pattie:  Wonderful Tonight: George Harrison, Eric Clapton, And Me.  Three Rivers Press, 2007

Good Morning Little Schoolgirl. The sixties fixation on young girls,

The darkest hour is just before dawn.

There’s one thing I want you to do

Especially for me.

And it’s something everybody needs…

Whisper a little prayer for me.

–Bass, Ralph. Pauling, Lawson

 

One needs a little encouragement in the black night of the soul.  One needs a little encouragement amidst the trials and tribulations of life.  The way is dark, the night is long and who knows what is waiting at the end of the road.  All the mythological heroes went through a period of madness.   Most likely at the mid-life crisis.  The greater the stresses the more difficult to avoid errors.  Why judge others so harshly when neither you nor I could have done better in the same circumstances.  If a person  is of good will and not ill why not be a little forgiving?  Especially if no crimes are committed.

As Pattie points out, when manager Brian Epstein died the Beatles were suddenly on their own.  To that time Brian had managed all the details, business as well as personal leaving the Beatles to do what they did best, write, record and perform songs.  The relationship had been perfect of its kind.  Given that the Beatles were now major successes rather than fledglings it would have been nearly impossible for them to put together a management team.

Of course, the Beatles were no businessmen.  In the attempt their musical skills were compromised while the business end could not prosper.  Cares such as they had not known descended on them.  Nor, did they understand that the smallest action or word of theirs would reverberate around the world.  They were no longer able to say or do what they pleased.  Millions of vulnerable young people and unstable adults hung on every word giving them whatever interpretation suited them best.  McCartney’s song Maxwell’s Silver Hammer did uncalculable damage.

When the Beatles closed their boutique waves of reaction crossed the world.  It was said they opened the doors and invited anyone to take what they wanted.  Away off in Keseyland on the West Coast of the US where I owned a record store a wave of kids descended on my store asking if everything was free.  These were zany times where everything was possible so, mystified, I asked why they would think that.   I was told the Beatles had just given away everything in their store and why wouldn’t I?  I became a bastard for not following the Beatles lead.

So, when Pattie noticed a change in George when they came back from India it was probably caused by business cares, a new reality that neither he nor the others knew exactly how to deal with, nor was there time to learn.  Those stresses, in the way of the human mind, are converted to sexual expressions.  In George’s case he began to mumble about having a lot of concubines.  A pretty normal reaction that he may never have acted upon.  I’m sure that when he showed up with Chris O’ Dell in tow it may have seemed like the first step. (See Chris O’ Dell’s auto for a fuller description.)  Chris became Pattie’s friend denying any relations with George, at least during her extended stay with the Harrisons, although after Pattie’s divorce the two came to terms.  But, for now she and Pattie became bosom buddies shopping and cavorting together.

What a wonderful time to have unlimited money and a huge mansion to furnish.

While the sixties are primarily thought of for the groups and records that was only one component of that truly wonderful and amazing time, at least looking at the bright side of  the penny.

P.F. Sloan, who penned Eve Of Destruction, titled one of his own LPs Raised On Records.  The title explained the generation.  Starting with perhaps Johnnie Ray leading on to Elvis the history of our generation was written by recording artists rather than novelists or even movies.  You might question starting with  Johnnie Ray but he was the first mind blowing departure from the norm.  Mind blowing explains the whole period.  Rock’s John the Baptist preceding the Jesus of Elvis.  A trail of great records led up to the British Invasion when the world tipped on its axis.  It was one mind blowing act after another.

First the Beatles upset the elders, long hair but clean  cut.  Then came the not so clean cut Rolling Stones with the weirdest thing you ever saw on stage, Brian Jones.  You couldn’t take your eyes off him.  Fantastic hair and the strangest clothes.  Mick probably had to get rid of the competition.   If the Stones weren’t bad enough they were followed by the appropriately named Animals.  The name said it all sending the old folks wild with gnashing teeth.  But backed up by Dylan and Peter, Paul And Mary the group mind was conditioned to move in the same direction in unison.

Beardsly  Nineties decadence meets the sixties

As Pattie says, she found the most wonderful art nouveau artefacts.  Indeed, Aubrey Beardsley, Alphone Mucha, Toulouse Lautrec, god, even the names, whoever heard of anyone named Aubrey?  The art focus shifted from that NY art junk.  Travel posters had been a staple for several years but now other posters began to augment them, Peter Max, East Totem West, the Fillmore and Avalon posters and the most spectacular of all- the giant personality posters.  Originally the posters were blown up real grainy so that if you stood close the picture wasn’t visible but stepping back and then back further the portrait emerged.  Drove the old folks wild, mytified the less hip; minds weren’t prepared.  Although by that time Telstar was old hat, and men had walked on the moon.  The impossible was no longer impossible, anything was possible and it kept happening.  Andy Warhol and his Campbell Soup can.  Good god.  Remember the Robert Indiana LOVE poster with the lopsided O?

Robert Indiana- Love

In the US the tax laws were such that you could make money on records and books without turning a profit.   Publishing exploded.  Nifty expensive art books of the strangest and most outre artists were available.  Virtual toys like the works of Victor Vaserelly.  It was incredible, it was magnificent, it was mind candy as never seen before.

I hope Pattie with all that coin took advantage of it.  There was a canchre in wonderland though.  Pattie didn’t keep her hand on the throttle but let her attention be diverted by sex.  Some reviewer said that Pattie wasn’t the brightest bulb.  Hmm.  I do wonder what she was thinking.

Now comes the part difficult of analysis.  Pattie, like all women portrays herself as an innocent, the helpless beauty in the clutches of two beasts who refuse to turn into princes when kissed.  I defend n o one but like a clear picture.  It was clear that Pattie is haunted by her parents relationships as she always mentions them at critical points.  She perceives her mother as a victim so it is possible that she was seeking revenge for her.

The time sequence Pattie presents is inadequate to follow the actual course of the relationship’s deterioration.  It is possible that Pattie decided to turn the tables and become polyandrous first.  She did conduct herself in that manner or, at least, try to.  The information is insufficient to determine the actual sequence of events.  She appears to always have been flirtatious with other men.  In reference to Clapton she says she allowed him to seduce her.  This implies volition and that she encouraged his attentions.  One might say she almost solicited the famous letter from Clapton she showed George.  It wouldn’t have taken a genius to figure out  the small e it was signed with referred to Clapton.  George was no dummy.  Pattie blithely passed it off as from an unknown fan.  Then she innocently expresses surprise when Clapton called that evening and asked if she had gotten his letter.  Oh please, Pattie.

George unable to take it anymore invites Clapton over, gives him one guitar, takes another engaging in a guitar duel with the prize being the fair lady.  Well, George found her, raised her up to where she was and then let Clapton take her.

Now, this is fairly reprehensible I think, Pattie left, but rather than seeking a divorce she lived with Clapton for two years while married to Harrison.  Affairs of the heart are beyond me so all I can say is that Harrison was too kind hearted, Pattie callous and cruel and Clapton a simple cad.  George always  did the honorable by Pattie and she should have done the same by him.

Forty Years Of Hard Travelin'. Lost innocence.

One questions Clapton’s motivations.  Clapton had a housefull of women when he professed his great love for Pattie; a nice girl I’m sure, but not to die for.  Pattie cagily put Clapton off so his threat was to become a heroin addict unless she came with him.  He was only snorting the heroin not shooting it.  Pattie let him, she says, for three years.

The only reason I can see for Clapton’s wanting her is emasculation games.  George was a Beatle with a guitar reputation therefore above him.  When  the two had their guitar duel, by consensus, George lost thereby losing status.  Clapton then took the woman thereby emasculationg the man he had made his rival.  But now he was stuck with this woman he didn’t really want.

In an interesting twist in the contest for supremacy both Clapton and Pattie were put down by the redoubtable Mick Jagger.  Pattie and Clapton had been married and threw a huge bash with mega fireworks, everything.

Mick Jagger came with Jerry Hall, who had been engaged to Brian Ferry but had left him for Mick.

So Jagger is leaving no stone unturned in his quest for supremacy even putting down a weak rival like Brian Ferry.

Jerry Hall and Mick

The party started in the afternoon and ended in the dawn.

By the time Eric and I went upstairs to bed it was daylight.  We were ready to drop- but Mick and Jerry were tucked up and fast asleep in our bed, with little Jade, his daughter with Bianca Jagger sleeping sweetly beside them.  Trust Mick to have found the best bed in the house.

So Jagger put down both Clapton and Pattie.  Childless herself she saw Mick’s child.  They could have turned Jagger out of the bed appearing boorish but if they had, dog tired, they would have had to change the sheets then crawling into a bed warmed by Jagger.  Mick aced them both demonstrating his supremacy.  Ah, those emasculation games.

Now, Pattie left George, supposedly because, or after, Clapton wrote Layla, but she didn’t divorce him for two years.  Thus as another man’s wife she was living as Clapton’s concubine.  Call me old fashioned but I can’t endorse such behavior.  Amazingly George didn’t press for a divorce letting Pattie divorce him on the grounds of lack of cohabitation for two years.

Perhaps she was avenging her mother’s treatment when her father carried on with the wife of an intimate friend for some time, perhaps two years, before divorcing the mother.  Obviously some psychological end is being served.

Clapton was no where near as generous monetarily as Harrison.  Pattie describes it as keeping her on a tight leash.  Nor did this man who professed to love his Layla so deeply then marry her.  No, they shambled along in his loose situation.

When they did marry it was under the most humiliating situation for Pattie.  We have only her side here but she says that Clapton and his manager had a bet that the manager couldn’t get a story about Clapton in the papers.  The manager without Clapton’s knowledge invented a story which was printed that Clapton would marry Pattie the next Tuesday.

Pattie had just walked out on Clapton and was in LA.  On the Friday before Clapton called her and said he needed an immediate answer.  Marry him by Tuesday or forget it.  Pattie folded.  After the I do-s Clapton left on an extended tour leaving Pattie to find her way home.

Amazingly she stayed with him for some time.  Even so she had not severed emotional ties with Harrison who remained unmarried.

Clapton was still playing money games with her.  One Christmas she went shopping running up a 5,000 pound tab at Harrod’s expecting to charge it to her Harrison account.  Surprise! The account had been closed.  Not having enough money in her checking account which Clapton apprently wouldn’t let her have she had the effrontery to ask Harrison who gave her a five thousand pound check.  Apparently Pattie misunderstood the meaning of the word divorce.

For whatever reason she showed the check to Clapton who, realizing he had been aced in the emasculation game, refused to let her cash it.

Now tiring of the games with Clapton Pattie sought a divorce.  More money games.

With Harrison, as a divorce settlement after abandoning him and cohabiting with another man, Pattie received 120,000 pounds.  In the circumstances I would see that as very generous.  She doesn’t say exactly what she received from Clapton but it was enough to provide her with a very sufficient investment income.

Not content with that  while apparently assuming divorce or no that Clapton owed her more she demanded he buy her a million pound house as he had spent that much on one for himself.  She was denied but it was agreed to buy her a 300,000 pound house although title would remain with Clapton.  She found one for approx. 350,000 pounds and was allowed to live in that.

Subseqently Clapton remarried.  The canny Pattie realizing that if Clapton died his wife would turn her out attempted some successful maneuvers.  She asked for 40,000 pounds for some remodeling.  Clapton refused but replying that he wasn’t aware that he was her landlord he deeded the house to her so she came out very well indeed.

During this time she was living with her third man named Rod.  He was nine years her junior.  Tiring of him she cruelly told him that his life as a ‘toy boy’ was up and to move on.

The inevitable conclusion is that Pattie viewed her mother’s relationships with men as she was growing up and came to some conclusions.  Although neither Harrison or Clapton were perfect men I am convinced that whatever their shortcomings Pattie was not an innocent victim.  She actively encouraged Clapton while married to Harrison, abandoning George for Clapton.  She knew Clapton’s attitude toward women and stimulants, both drugs and alcohol before she ‘allowed herself to be seduced’ so his addictions came as no surprise.  She has no complaint on that score.

Pattie made the remark in closing that if the right man came along she would snap him up in a minute.  Having lived every groupie’s dream of snaring a Beatle and Clapton the only eligible rock star to complete her trifecta would be the Man himself- Mick Jagger.

I would be interested to see that combination.  The odysseys of this simple Kenyan girl from Harrison to Clapton to Jagger would certainly equal the odyssey of her fellow Kenyan, Barack Obama.

Pattie today. Further down the road.

End.

 

https://idynamo.wordpress.com/2009/12/09/a-review-wonderful-tonight-by-pattie-boyd-i-of-ii-famous-groupies-of-the-sixties-series/