John Lennon, musical legend and former Beatle, would have turned 75-years-old this past October. In memoriam, a group of his musical admirers, along with Rolling Stone, are doing something very special. As reported by CMT, on December 5 a tribute concert will take place at Madison Square Garden to celebrate Lennon’s life and music. AMC will also televise the concert two weeks later on December 19. It will be called, Imagine: John Lennon 75th Birthday Concert.
Among the most famous on the list of announced performers are Steven Tyler of Aerosmith and country music star Willie Nelson. Sheryl Crow, Eric Church, and Chris Stapleton — who was perhaps the most talked-about artist at the 2015 CMA awards, according to a previously published Inquisitr article — are also expected to be a part of the show.
The New York City theater will be filled with lots of other musical talent, as well. Rolling Stone reports that, in addition to Tyler and Nelson being featured, Brandon Flowers of The Killers, Pat Monahan of Train, Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, as well as The Roots, Peter Frampton, Kris Kristofferson, Aloe Blacc, and Juanes have been announced. It is expected that more performers will be added before the concert, as well.
Don Was, a Rolling Stone producer, will be one of the musical directors of the event. Don Was previously worked on a separate TV tribute to the Beatles, called The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles, according to Rolling Stone. The Lennon birthday tribute concert will also be directed by Greg Phillinganes, who played the keyboard for Michael Jackson. Phillanganes worked on a tribute to musical legend Stevie Wonder in the past. Rolling Stone also reports that Gregg Gelfrand will also be heavily involved with Lennon’s tribute; Gelfrand also worked on the Beatles tribute.
The show will take place on Wednesday, December 9, which is the day after the anniversary of John Lennon’s death. On December 8, 1980, Lennon was shot and killed outside of his home in New York City. He had turned 40 just under two months prior. Now, 35 years later, big names in the musical industry will come together to celebrate both Lennon and the music he brought to the world.
Yoko Ono, John Lennon’s wife, seemed to be very touched by the idea of this tribute. As told by CMT, Yoko Ono said in a public statement that it was “beautiful to see so many wonderful and talented musicians come together for this special show to celebrate John’s birthday.” Ono went on to talk about how much Lennon’s art inspired people in the world and, still today, enables them to have hope and believe in their abilities to make the world a better place. She noted that several generations have been touched by her late husband’s work and the messages that were presented through his music.
“His influence is everlasting in everyone’s hearts as we all share in the possibilities and power of music.”
Tickets for Imagine: John Lennon 75th Birthday Concert are not yet on sale; they will be available starting November 17 on Ticketmaster. Rolling Stone reports say that a portion of the money received from ticket sales will go toward fighting poverty through a donation to a New York City organization called Robin Hood.
Will you be rushing to get your tickets for the live show at Madison Square Garden this winter? Maybe you’ll be watching from home if you don’t make it out to the show. Although Lennon passed many years ago, it seems Yoko Ono couldn’t have said it better. People of all generations still seem to be touched by his music.
[Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty images]