The GRAMMY Museum will debut its latest exhibit — John Lennon, Songwriter — on Oct. 4, in association with Hard Rock International, in celebration of the 70th anniversary of the legendary artist's birth on Oct. 9. (A special members-only preview opens Oct. 3.) The exhibition will pay tribute to the seven-time GRAMMY winner's songwriting genius, his roots and influences, and will explore various elements of Lennon's songwriting history.
"We are privileged and honored to open our newest exhibit, John Lennon, Songwriter, in commemoration of one of the most prolific and profound songwriters of our time," said Robert Santelli, Executive Director of the GRAMMY Museum. "Lennon's songs are as insightful and empowering as ever, and they continue to inspire and change the world. We are grateful to Yoko Ono for choosing the GRAMMY Museum as a temporary home to display some of these memorable and important pieces that illustrate the breadth of her late husband's extraordinary career."
John Lennon, Songwriter will cover some of the singer/songwriter's early influences including Eddie Cochran, Bob Dylan, Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley, and more; his time with the Quarrymen and the transition into the early Beatles period; his songwriting collaborations with Paul McCartney; and his transition from the Beatles to a solo artist/songwriter and his work with Ono.
Some of the artifacts to be featured in the exhibit include:
• Several guitars used by John Lennon (including his Fender Telecaster)
• Early albums
• Lennon's signature round, wire-framed eyeglasses
• His typewriter (used to write lyrics early in his career)
• Original drawings by Lennon
• His Sgt. Pepper Lonely Hearts Club Band costume
• Lennon's Album Of The Year GRAMMY Award for Double Fantasy
• Many handwritten song lyrics, including "Imagine" and "Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)"
• Early Beatles photographs and original posters
• Quarrymen ephemera
• Rare, historic footage of Lennon
• A never-before-seen interview with Ono about Lennon’s songwriting
• An In The Studio With John Lennon interactive studio exhibit
In addition to the opening of this new exhibit, other related events occurring include two performances of We Are Plastic Ono Band on Oct. 1 and Oct. 2 at the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles with special surprise guests; American Express Presents An Evening With Yoko Ono on Oct. 3 at 8 p.m. at the GRAMMY Museum's Clive Davis Theater, featuring an up-close-and-personal interview with the two-time GRAMMY winner about her late husband's life and legacy; the West Coast premiere of American Masters: LENNONYC, a documentary in association with WNET.org for PBS, on Oct. 4 at 7:30 p.m., also at the Clive Davis Theater; and EMI's worldwide release of eight of Lennon's classic solo albums and other recordings on Oct. 4 (Oct. 5 in North America), which have been digitally remastered and overseen by Ono. Oct. 4 also will see the opening of a special John Lennon memorabilia installation at the Hard Rock Cafe Hollywood on Hollywood Boulevard.
Additionally, on Nov. 2, in partnership with Hard Rock International, a benefit concert celebrating the music of Lennon will take place at the new Hard Rock Cafe Hollywood on Hollywood Boulevard. Imagine There's No Hunger: Celebrating The Songs Of John Lennon will feature several artists performing classic Lennon songs, and proceeds from the event will go to the GRAMMY Museum and WhyHunger, a nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting hunger and poverty around the world. Details regarding tickets and performances will be announced in the coming weeks.
Tickets for American Express Presents An Evening With Yoko Ono are $25. American Express presale tickets may be purchased by American Express card members online at Ticketmaster.com or by calling 1.800.745.3000 beginning Sept. 24 at 12 p.m. PT. Ticket purchase includes a special gift. American Express is the exclusive payment method for presale tickets. All proceeds benefit the GRAMMY Museum.
(View video below of Lennon co-presenting the GRAMMY Award for Record Of The Year in 1972, and Ono and son Sean Lennon accepting the GRAMMY Award for Album Of The Year for Double Fantasy in 1982.)