Being John Lennon review: Ray Connolly on the life and times of his old friend

Being John Lennon

Ray Connolly

Being John Lennon. By Ray Connolly.

Being John Lennon. By Ray Connolly.

Weidenfeld & Nicolson, $35

Alan Price of The Animals told me John Lennon was "a beautiful guy", Marianne Faithful said he was "scary". I suspect it would have all depended on the day – which Lennon you got. Ray Connolly's picture of Lennon, whom he knew from 1967 on, takes in the "labyrinth of contradictions" of his subject. But, like most Beatle portraits, there's really nothing new here. It's well written, and intelligent, and Connolly's social and historical observations inform the book, adding depth and background. This is especially true of his description of the rapidly changing Britain that saw the release of Please Please Me. The "old order", says Connolly, "was changing … and The Beatles were arriving just in time". As Lennon observed of that explosive period known as Beatlemania, "This is not show business. This is something else."

Source: Read Full Article