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Painting inspired top Beatles track

A British housewife says a painting of her by Lennon's son had inspired a famous number of the band.

art and culture Updated: Jun 01, 2007 19:14 IST

For years, Beatles fans have thought that one of the band's most famous songs was about drugs, but a British housewife said today it was inspired by a painting of her by John Lennon's young son.

Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, a track on the Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band which marks its 40th anniversary today, was a 1960s drug culture anthem which was widely believed to be about LSD.

But Lucy Vodden, 43, a three-year-old classmate of Julian Lennon when the song was written, told BBC radio, "Julian had painted a picture and on that particular day, his father turned up with the chauffeur to pick him up from school. "I can imagine him painting a figure and saying: 'That's my friend Lucy at school' and his father consequently asking questions -- 'What's that in the sky?' or 'What's surrounding it?'".

Vodden's claims have been backed up by a string of Beatles biographers but she has struggled to persuade her own friends that the story is true, she said.

"When I told a couple of friends that Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds was about me, they said, 'No, it can't be, it's to do with LSD,'" she said. "I was too embarrassed to tell them that I didn't know what LSD was."

The BBC is broadcasting a documentary on the album featuring cover versions of the Beatles tunes by Oasis, The Killers and Kaiser Chiefs among others.