John Lennon Shares Thoughts On Son Julian In Recently Unearthed 1966 Interview

Words by Riley Fitzgerald
Graphic by Press

In a January 1966 Melody Maker interview, recently unearthed by music journalism archive Rock’s Backpages, John Lennon shares several revealing thoughts.

He’s great, you know,” Lennon shares of the Beatles‘ manager Brian Epstein, whos signed the Beatles in 1961 and later died of a drug overdose in 1967.

When people talk about him,” Lennon continues, “they say he’s harsh and hard and I expect he can be a bit of a bastard at times. He’s a businessman, so he has to be.”

He’s never a businessman with us though,” the Beatle confides. “We only talk business about twice a year. He sometimes has a go at us, then we have a go back and it’s forgotten.”

John is then asked to share his view on babies.

I’m not keen on any except my own,” he jokes, referring to his then-infant firstborn son Julian Lennon.

I’m typical of most men in that respect, I suppose,” he continues.

(John had little to do with his own father Alfred Lennon, who left home before the Beatle was born.)

I think he does marvelous things which no other baby ever does,” Lennon shares. “For instance, if he pounds on the piano I think, look at that, it’s marvelous when any kid would do the same in time if there was a piano in the house.

Among several other topics, John also makes comment on his home city of Liverpool.

Two years after Lennon gave the interview, he divorced first wife Cynthia Powell for future partner Yoko Ono.

After this, he would have only limited contact with Julian.

In the past, Julian has expressed that he had a complicated relationship with his father.

I only saw him a handful of times before he was killed,” Julian wrote of his father in 2000. “Sadly, I never really knew the man.”

I had a great deal of anger towards Dad because of his negligence and his attitude to peace and love,” he continued. “That peace and love never came home to me.”

This said his views have changed in recent years on account of his close relationship with half-brother Sean Ono Lennon.

Because I love Sean so much I just don’t want to hurt him,” he recently shared. “I can get over it. I have got over it.”

You can access the full Rock’s Backpages interview here.


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