For more than a quarter century, Philip Norman's internationally bestselling Shout! has been unchallenged as the definitive biography of the Beatles. Now, at last, Norman turns his formidable talent to the Beatle for whom belonging to the world's most beloved pop group was never enough. Drawing on previously untapped sources, and with unprecedented access to all the major characters, here is the comprehensive and most revealing portrait of John Lennon that is ever likely to be published.
This masterly biography takes a fresh and penetrating look at every aspect of Lennon's much-chronicled life, including the songs that have turned him, posthumously, into a near-secular saint. In three years of research, Norman has turned up an extraordinary amount of new information about even the best-known episodes of Lennon folklore--his upbringing by his strict Aunt Mimi; his allegedly wasted school and student days; the evolution of his peerless creative partnership with Paul McCartney; his Beatle-busting love affair with a Japanese performance artist; his forays into painting and literature; his experiments with Transcendental Meditation, primal scream therapy, and drugs. The book's numerous key informants and interviewees include Sir Paul McCartney, Sir George Martin, Sean Lennon--whose moving reminiscence reveals his father as never before--and Yoko Ono, who speaks with sometimes shocking candor about the inner workings of her marriage to John.
Honest and unflinching, as John himself would wish, Norman gives us the whole man in all his endless contradictions--tough and cynical, hilariously funny but also naive, vulnerable and insecure--and reveals how the mother who gave him away as a toddler haunted his mind and his music for the rest of his days.
Norman (Shout!: The Beatles in Their Generation) offers a grand, comprehensive, yet sprightly biography of the late Beatle. His sympathetic but sharp treatment captures Lennon's charm and charisma, but also his cruelty to loved ones, his rebel posturings, his resentment of Paul McCartney's matchless songwriting powers and growing dominance of the band, his debaucheries, his drunk and disorderlies, his shoplifting and his Oedipal yearnings. Norman is a smart analyst of pop music and its cultural setting and a scintillating miniaturist of Beatlemania. (He likens the band's trademark shriek-inducing hair-shakings to "manic feather-dusters.") He manages the difficult trick of loving Lennon's music without swooning over it, pronouncing "Strawberry Fields" both a great song and "crafted druggy gibberish." Lennon emerges as a bright, troubled, insecure man who grasped at profundity and occasionally touched it; from Norman's portrait, we see why so many consider him a soul mate. Photos. (Oct.)
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Showing 1-1 of the 1 most recent reviews
1 . Meh
Posted December 02, 2009 by Sister Moonshine , Torontolennon was actually a dick. After i read this i didnt really like him as much. read it to learn about him but don't expect to find the peacful fun loving person that is expected. he isnt what it seems. in spite of it all it i swell written.
October 04, 2008
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