BJT Editor’s Book Offers Fresh Insights about John Lennon

BJT editor Jeff Burger’s newly published Lennon on Lennon: Conversations with John Lennon anthologizes some of the artist’s most illuminating interviews.

As the book begins, with a 1964 Q&A, Lennon is a newly famous 23-year-old rock star who struggles, often unsuccessfully, to express himself. In subsequent interviews, though, he emerges as an increasingly articulate and controversial figure with a commanding personality and quick wit. He speaks candidly about his intense, sometimes tumultuous relationship with Yoko Ono, his split with the Beatles, his squabbles with Paul McCartney, his evolving political views, and many other topics. By the time he grants this book’s final interview, only hours before his death, he has become as well known for his outsized personality as for his music.

The majority of Lennon on Lennon’s conversations have not been previously available in print, and several of the most important—comprising more than a third of this volume—have not been widely available in any format. Together, they paint a revealing picture of the artist in his own words and offer a window into the cultural atmosphere of the sixties and seventies.

The book is Burger’s third for Chicago Review Press’s Musicians in Their Own Words series. Springsteen on Springsteen: Interviews, Speeches, and Encounters came out in 2013, followed by Leonard Cohen on Leonard Cohen: Interviews and Encounters in 2014.

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