John Lennon 70th Birthday Events

Mon Oct 4, 2010 7:59pm EDT
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NEW YORK (Billboard) - There are places we remember, all our lives, though some have changed. Seventy years after the birth of John Winston Ono Lennon, the memories and music live on.

We remember where we were that night those lads from Liverpool leapt a wild octave -- "I wanna hold your hand!" -- before a screaming audience on "The Ed Sullivan Show." And simply changed the world.

Or the days we carefully placed each vinyl gift from the Fab Four on a turntable, from the irresistible "Meet the Beatles" through the adventurous "Rubber Soul," from the psychedelia of "Sgt. Pepper" to the swan song of "Let It Be." Or where we first heard the songs of John Lennon, solo artist: the quiet ferocity of "Working Class Hero," the tough idealism of "Imagine" or the buoyant hope of "Starting Over," and so many more.

And we grieve still for that December night in 1980 when a gunman struck on a street in New York, taking Lennon's life. But not his legacy.

Now a younger generation can say, "There are places we remember," linking moments in their lives with the music Lennon created, whether with the Beatles or as a solo artist. Younger fans have discovered the hits of Lennon & McCartney through the film "Across the Universe," through the Cirque du Soleil show "Love" or through the interactive joy of playing "The Beatles: Rock Band" videogame.

And they've taken to the streets to protest wars from Iraq to Afghanistan, chanting Lennon's still-all-too-relevant demand, "Give Peace a Chance." Seventy years after the birth of John Lennon, Billboard celebrates his legacy by spotlighting events around the world.


Just as the songs of John Lennon won the hearts of fans worldwide during his lifetime, an array of events and projects are marking the 70th anniversary of Lennon's birthday on October 9. Here are just a few.

October 9: Lennon Ono Grant for Peace Awards in Iceland   Continued...

<p>A woman watches a video at the "John Lennon, Songwriter" exhibit during a press preview at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles October 1, 2010. REUTERS/Fred Prouser</p>