John Lennon, the English rock musician, singer, songwriter, author and peace activist, who gained worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles, is being remembered world over on his birth anniversary today.
Lennon wrote some of the most popular music in rock and roll history. He is ranked the second most successful songwriter in UK singles chart history after Paul McCartney. He was controversial through his work as a peace activist and visual artist. After The Beatles, Lennon also enjoyed a successful solo career.
In his solo career, Lennon won various awards. He won the Grammy Award - 1981 Album of the Year (for Double Fantasy), 1982 BRIT Awards for his outstanding contribution to music and in 2002, a 100 Greatest Britons BBC poll voted Lennon at the eighth place. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked Lennon number 38 on its list of "The Immortals: The Fifty Greatest Artists of All Time" (The Beatles being number one). He was also ranked the fifth greatest singer of all time by Rolling Stone in 2008. He was inducted into both the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1987 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.
On the night of 8 December 1980, Mark David Chapman shot Lennon in the back four times. Earlier that evening, Lennon had autographed a copy of Double Fantasy for Chapman who had been stalking Lennon since October. Lennon was taken to the emergency room of nearby Roosevelt Hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival at 11:07 pm.
During an interview hours before his murder, Lennon stated: "I've always considered my work one piece whether it be with Beatles, David Bowie, Elton John, or Yoko Ono. And I consider that my work won't be finished until I'm dead and buried and I hope that's a long, long time."