Friday, October 9, marks what would have been the 80th birthday of John Lennon.
In honour of the occasion, the late Beatle’s son Sean Ono Lennon appeared on Thursday night’s edition of “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” to perform a cover of “Isolation”, from Lennon’s 1970 solo debut.
“Hey guys, here’s my version of ‘ISOLATION’, with me on drums and my nephew Jack on bass. Crazy how much the lyrics fit our current year,” he wrote.
He then challenged fans: “Please upload a cover of your favourite John Lennon song, put #GIMMESOMETRUTH and #LENNON80 and tag my dad @johnlennon (on YouTube, Instagram, TikTok) to help celebrate his 80th birthday. We need his music and his message now more than ever!”
To commemorate Lennon’s 80th, a new John Lennon box set, Gimme Some Truth: The Ultimate Mixes, was released on Friday.
In addition, SiriusXM’s the Beatles Channel will feature exclusive programming throughout the weekend, including Alec Baldwin’s interview with Paul McCartney, who shares his memories of Lennon.
McCartney also shared a tribute to his friend and musical collaborator on Twitter.
— Paul McCartney (@PaulMcCartney) October 9, 2020
Sean Ono Lennon spoke with George Stroumboulopoulos on his Apple Music show, discussing his father’s musical legacy in a two-hour special.
In the interview, Lennon explains how his mom Yoko Ono has worked to keep the late Beatle’s music and message alive.
“For her, it’s all about peace and love and the message,” he explained. “I mean, she’s really sincerely a kind of philosophical, spiritual person and leader.”
He also addressed misconceptions fans have of his father. “He was fun and hilarious and he could be very kind. But he was tough… I think my dad’s image sometimes is mistaken for the most sort of saccharine parts of certain songs, the sort of sweetest, ‘teddy bear in a cloud’ version of himself. Whereas the tougher side, I think over time, has maybe been less remembered, but during the Beatles’ time everyone thought of him as a tough guy.”
The full two-hour interview can be heard here on Friday, Oct. 9, at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT.