Recently the 40th anniversary of John Lennon — the 7-time Grammy winner, who was killed on Dec. 8, 1980, was remembered by his children as well as former bandmates Paul McCartney, 78, and Ringo Starr, 80. He died after being shot four times by Mark David Chapman on the night of December 8, 1980, in front of his New York city home.
“Imagine”, released in 1971 from the album of the same name by John Lennon cemented him as a songwriting genius on his own right following the breakup of The Beatles the year before. It is seen as his aspiration for a fair world and the epitome of The Beatles’ legacy. However, in the decades that passed, “Imagine” had been misunderstood for so many times.
Former US President Jimmy Carter said, “in many countries around the world – my wife and I have visited about 125 countries– you hear John Lennon’s song ‘Imagine’ used almost equally with national anthems.”
The song is often associated with situations of grief or pity, and it has been covered a handful of times. Queen performed a cover on December 9, 1980, the day after Lennon’s murder, as a tribute to him during their Wembley Arena show in London.
Then Stevie Wonder performed a version during the closing ceremony of the 1996 Summer Olympics, as a tribute to the victims of the Centennial Olympic Park bombing. Five years later, Neil Young performed a cover of this iconic song by Lennon at a concert commemorating the heroic examples of saving lives in the terrorist attack on America on Sept 11,2021.
However, in an interview with the press, shortly before his assassination in December 1980, Lennon shared that Dick Gregory had given him and Ono a Christian book, and it’s the content of which inspired him to write the song “Imagine”.
John Lennon composed and performed the song “Imagine” in 1971 as a gift to his wife Yoko Ono. This song is seen as John Lennon’s declaration of a peaceful world, without nations separately divided by ethnicity and religion. Perhaps for that reason, “Imagine” has been regarded as a song of peace by many people.
Lately, lots of celebrities have covered “Imagine” during the quarantine period due to the coronavirus pandemic which accordingly created a trend on YouTube. Israeli actress Gal Gadot is a proponent of this trend who enlisted stars to sing “Imagine”. In March 2020, in response to the unfolding coronavirus pandemic,Gal Gadot posted an informal but star-studded cover version of “Imagine” on Instagram and said that she was inspired by a video of a man in Italy playing the trumpet from his balcony for the other tenants in his building.
“We are in this together, we will get through it together,” Gadot captioned the post. “Let’s imagine together. Sing with us ❤ All love to you, from me and my dear friends.”