[[caption-width-right:350:John Lennon during his time with Music/TheBeatles.]]

->''"A working class hero is something to be''
->''If you want to be a hero, then just follow me"''
-->--"Working Class Hero" - ''Music/JohnLennonPlasticOnoBand''

John Winston Ono Lennon, MBE[[note]]Though John gave up his MBE medal, the British government never rescinded the title.[[/note]] (9 October 1940 8 December 1980) was a member of the revolutionary band Music/TheBeatles. He left The Beatles in late 1969 to focus on his solo career with his wife Music/YokoOno. He was murdered by LoonyFan Mark David Chapman on December 8, 1980.

He ended at #8 in ''Series/OneHundredGreatestBritons''.

!!Studio and Live Discography (* = John and [[Music/YokoOno Yoko]], ** = John Lennon):

* 1968 - ''Music/UnfinishedMusicNo1TwoVirgins''*
* 1969 - ''Music/UnfinishedMusicNo2LifeWithTheLions''*
* 1969 - ''Music/WeddingAlbum''*
* 1969 - ''Live Peace In Toronto 1969''*
* 1970 - ''Music/JohnLennonPlasticOnoBand''**
* 1971 - ''Music/{{Imagine}}''**
* 1972 - ''Some Time In New York City''* [[note]]The first half was recorded in the studio, the second half was recorded live[[/note]]
* 1973 - ''Music/MindGames''**
* 1974 - ''Walls And Bridges''**
* 1975 - ''Rock 'n' Roll''**
* 1980 - ''Double Fantasy''*
* 1984 - ''Milk And Honey''*
* 1986 - ''Live In New York City''*

!!! John Lennon is the {{Trope Namer|s}} for:

* LennonSpecs
* SillyLoveSongs [[note]]Indirectly; Music/PaulMcCartney wrote the titular song in response to a disparaging comment Lennon had made regarding the former's solo work.[[/note]]
* WorkingClassHero

!!! "Nobody told me there'd be tropes like these...":

* AnswerSong: "How Do You Sleep?" from ''Music/{{Imagine}}''(see TheReasonYouSuckSpeech below).
** "Serve Yourself", a scathing response to Music/BobDylan's "Gotta Serve Somebody" from ''Music/SlowTrainComing''.
* ArsonMurderAndJaywalking: When Lennon returned his MBE to Buckingham Palace in 1969 (four years after receiving it with the other three Beatles), he enclosed a note giving his reasons: "I am returning this MBE in protest against Britain's involvement in the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nigerian_Civil_War Nigeria-Biafra]] [[BuffySpeak thing]], against our support of America in Vietnam, and against 'Cold Turkey' slipping down the charts." "Cold Turkey," his most recent single, was turning in a relatively poor performance on the music charts, peaking at No. 14 in the UK and No. 30 in the U.S.
* ArtisticStimulation: Although all four Beatles used drugs of one sort or another throughout much of their group and/or solo careers, Lennon, from 1966 through 1969, indulged much more heavily than the other three put together, first becoming psychologically dependent on LSD and then, together with Yoko, becoming addicted to heroin. Although both dependencies caused him considerable [[DrugsAreBad suffering]], they did serve (again, far more than for his bandmates) as inspiration for some of his greatest songs - most directly "Cold Turkey," essentially heroin withdrawal symptoms set to music.
* TheAtoner: In the songs "Jealous Guy" and "Woman", Lennon expresses remorse for his previous treatment of the women in his life.
* AvantGardeMusic: Lennon has dabbled quite a lot in experimenting with sound, music and noises. He did this early on already, but his experimentations became more prominent after he met Music/YokoOno, most prominent on "Revolution # 9" from ''Music/TheWhiteAlbum''. His first three solo albums, ''Music/UnfinishedMusicNo1TwoVirgins'' (1968), ''Music/UnfinishedMusicNo2LifeWithTheLions'' (1968) and ''Music/WeddingAlbum'' (1969) are completely avant garde sound experiments. From ''Music/JohnLennonPlasticOnoBand'' his music actually became basic rock again, but he still dared to create tracks that had uncommercial sound experiments or very personal confessions about his relationship with Yoko.
* BigApplesauce: An album, a song, a [[http://www.unfogged.com/John-Lennon-New-York-1974-Posters.jpg famous photo.]]
-->"There's [=UFOs=] over New York, and I ain't too surprised." -- "Nobody Told Me"
* BiggerThanJesus: The {{Trope Namer|s}}, although John [[BeamMeUpScotty didn't actually say it]]. His actual BlasphemousBoast in 1966 was a claim that the Beatles were "''more popular'' than Jesus," which passed without notice in his native England (where the decline in church attendance he was talking about was a well-known phenomenon), then landed him and his bandmates in big trouble when the quote was reprinted ([[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/More_popular_than_Jesus out of context]]) in the staunchly Christian and comparatively conservative America.
* BookEnds: ''Music/JohnLennonPlasticOnoBand'' opens with "Mother" and ends with "My Mummy's Dead".
* BreadEggsMilkSquick: "Nobody Told Me":
--> "Everybody's talking and no one says a word\\
Everybody's making love and no one really cares\\
There's Nazis in the bathroom just below the stairs\\
Always something happening and nothing going on\\
There's always something cooking and nothing in the pot\\
[[AppealToWorseProblems They're starving back in China]] so finish what you got"
* BrokenRecord: From "John Sinclair"
--> ''What else can Judge Colombo do? \\
Gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta, \\
gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta, \\
gotta, gotta, gotta, gotta, \\
gotta, gotta, gotta set him free''
** The ending of "Well, Well, Well", too, well, apart from the [[SanitySlippageSong Primal Screaming factor]].
* TheBully: He was notorious for being this in his school years. Although gradually mellowing out as he matured, throughout his whole life he would always carry nasty shades of it.
* CallBack:
** The first verse of "Power to the People" starts thusly: "Say you want a revolution/We better get it on right away!". This is a Call Back to his more skeptical take in his Beatles song "Revolution": "You say you want a revolution/Well you know/We all want to change the world."
** The "ting ting ting" of a little chiming bell that opens "(Just Like) Starting Over" on ''Double Fantasy'' is a Call Back to [[ForDoomTheBellTolls the heavy, doom-laden church bell]] that opens "Mother" on ''Plastic Ono Band''. Lennon said in [[http://boythewayglennmillerplayed.blogspot.com/2009/12/final-interview-part-v.html the last interview he ever gave]] that this was deliberate, meant to symbolise that he had come through all of his issues.
** "I was [[Music/MagicalMysteryTour the Walrus]], but now I'm John."
** "How Do You Sleep" references [[Music/SgtPeppersLonelyHeartsClubBand Sgt. Pepper]], the Paul is dead theory, and "[[Music/{{Help}} Yesterday]]".
* ChristmasSongs: "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)"
* ContemptibleCover: ''Music/UnfinishedMusicNo1TwoVirgins'', which featured John and Yoko completely nude.
* CoverAlbum: ''Rock 'n' Roll''
* CrazyJealousGuy: "Run for Your Life" (for The Beatles) and "Jealous Guy". [[OldShame He later regretted writing]] "Run for Your Life" due to the highly sexist lyrics (in which he threatens to kill a girlfriend if she's unfaithful).
* DeadArtistsAreBetter: Far from a perfect example of this trope, as Lennon had more than his share of critical and popular recognition during his lifetime. Nevertheless, the years following his murder saw his less positive traits, and the unevenness of his post-Beatles career output, largely forgotten in favor of the mythical image (strongly, but not solely, cultivated by his widow) of Lennon as a gentle, saintly prophet of peace. As a result, when Albert Goldman published his negative, sensationalist ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lives_of_John_Lennon The Lives of John Lennon]]'' a mere eight years after the subject's death, he received, in addition to justly deserved criticism for his shoddy and selective research, numerous ''death threats'' from Lennon fans for daring to say ''anything'' negative about him (which, given the "prophet of peace" bit, is ComicallyMissingThePoint).
** [[FunnyAneurysmMoment He]] [[HarsherinHindsight refers]] to this phenomenon in "Nobody Loves You When You're Down and Out"
---> Everybody loves you when you're six feet in the ground
* TheDeadRiseToAdvertise: Encouraging us to donate to One Laptop Per Child. It's a good cause and all, but still unnerving. A "'portable' computer with built-in monitor" [[http://oldcomputers.net/ibm5100.html DID exist]] in John Lennon's lifetime. The screen size looks somewhat like the OLPC. They should have made a pun of that perhaps?
* DeadpanSnarker: The snarkiest of all the Beatles...and boy does that show a lot in interviews!
* DisappearedDad: Lennon had a distant and often neglectful relationship with his oldest son Julian, who's been quite open about being closer to [[ParentalSubstitute Paul [=McCartney=]]] than his own father. The song "Hey Jude" was written by [=McCartney=] to console Julian over his parents' divorce and Lennon's perpetual absence.
** In addition, Lennon's father Alfred "Alf" Lennon was never around much in his childhood, later dismissed when showing up at the NEMS offices with a journalist in 1964, and a few weeks after seeing his dad's portrait, he got back in touch with his dad, telling Cynthia "Alright Cyn, he's a bit 'wacky' like me". He was solely raised by his mother and aunt, and his mother Julia Lennon (neé Stanley) was killed in 1958 when hit by an off-duty constable with a learner's permit.
* DistinctDoubleAlbum: ''Some Time In New York City'' contains one album of new studio material and one album of live recordings.
* ExcitedShowTitle: "Instant Karma!", "Oh Yoko!"
* FallingBass: "Mind Games"
* ForDoomTheBellTolls: An ominous tolling church bell opens "Mother", the GriefSong that opens Lennon's first solo album, ''Plastic Ono Band''. Referenced ten years later on ''Double Fantasy'' (see CallBack above).
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: "Imagine," by Lennon's own admission, "is virtually ''The Communist Manifesto''" set to music, "even though I'm not particularly a Communist and I do not belong to any movement". (It could arguably be considered more similar to the writings of [[UsefulNotes/{{Anarchism}} anarcho-communists]] like Pyotr Kropotkin and Emma Goldman, who took issue with some of Marx's ideas). Of the song, Lennon told ''NME'', "There is no real Communist state in the world; you must realise that. The Socialism I speak about ... [is] not the way some daft Russian might do it, or the Chinese might do it. That might suit them. Us, we should have a nice ... British Socialism."
** "Pornographic priestess" and "you let your knickers down" in "[[Music/MagicalMysteryTour I Am The Walrus]]"; the "tit tit tit tit" backing vocals in "[[Music/RubberSoul Girl]]" (not to mention the very clear reference to the inhalation of marijuana in the chorus); the drug references scattered throughout Music/TheBeatles' latter-day songs--he loved this trope. He was much more blatant in his solo career, but cases like "Tight A$" and "Meat City" still show a bit of it.
* {{God}}: [[StrawNihilist "is a concept by which we measure our pain."]]
* GoingColdTurkey: [[CaptainObvious "Cold Turkey"]]. Heroin withdrawal set to music.
* GreatestHitsAlbum: ''Shaved Fish'' in his lifetime. ''Lennon Legend'', ''The John Lennon Collection'', and others after his death, most recently ''Power to the People: The Hits''.
* GriefSong: "Mother" and "My Mummy's Dead," which respectively open and close his album ''John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band''. Later, his death inspired several, including his old [[Music/TheBeatles Beatles]] bandmate Music/GeorgeHarrison's "All Those Years Ago," released five months after Lennon was killed. Music/RingoStarr also played drums and Music/PaulMcCartney, along with [[Music/{{Wings}} Linda McCartney and Denny Laine]], sing backing vocals on the single, which reached No. 2 on the U.S. Billboard chart.
** Several other artists released mourning songs for John, including Music/PaulMcCartney's "Here Today", Music/EltonJohn's "Empty Garden", Music/JoanBaez's "Sgt. Pepper's Band", Music/{{Queen}}'s "Life Is Real", and, most recently, Music/BobDylan's "Roll On John". Music/StevieNicks says that "Edge of Seventeen" is for both Lennon and her Uncle Jonathan who had died suddenly of cancer the same week.
* GrowOldWithMe: Title to one of the last songs he ever wrote. [[FunnyAneurysmMoment He wrote it five weeks before his assassination]].
* HistoryRepeats: When John saw for the first time a picture of [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yasuda_Zenjirō Yasuda Zenjirō]], who was Creator/YokoOno's grandfather, he supposedly said "[[{{Reincarnation}} that's me in a former life]]", to which she responded "don't say that. [[TemptingFate He was assassinated]]".
* IAmTheBand: Lennon's Plastic Ono Band.
** Within the Beatles Lennon is also sometimes seen as the most creative, intelligent, original and innovative member. Despite the fact that Music/PaulMcCartney is an equally strong candidate for that title, save for the part that he hadn't the same badass "cool" rebel image Lennon had.
* IconicOutfit: The green army jacket. and granny glasses (whether dark or regular)
* JesusWasWayCool: What he really tried to talk about during his "more popular than Jesus" statement was the good Christ/bad Christian dichotomy that other famous dead people have commented on.
-->'''John:''' Jesus was all right, but his disciples were thick and ordinary. It's them twisting it that ruins it for me.
* LighterAndSofter: While ''Imagine'' does have "Gimme Some Truth," "I Don't Want to Be a Soldier" and "How Do You Sleep?", that Lennon could go in a year from singing "The dream is over the dream is over" in "God" to singing "You may say I'm a dreamer but I'm not the only one" in "Imagine" suggests that he got ''something'' out of his system.
* LikesOlderWomen: In a rare interview with Cynthia Lennon, she stated that the reason why John would end up with Yoko (and was attracted to Alma Cogan) was that of her age. Yoko's age made her a mother figure to John, which he [[IMissMom never had since the passing of his own mother]].
* ListSong: "God" is mainly a list of things Lennon doesn't believe in.
* LiveAlbum: ''Live Peace in Toronto 1969'', and after his death, ''Live in New York City'', a recording of the famous 1972 Madison Square Garden concert.
* MaleFrontalNudity: See ContemptibleCover above.
* TheMan: From "New York City"--If the man wants to shove us out[=/=]We gonna jump and shout[=/=]The Statue of Liberty said, "come!"
* MeadowRun: At the end of the "Oh Yoko!" music video. Though, they did it on a shore of the beach and referencing the famous scene from ''Literature/WutheringHeights'' for they [[NarmCharm shout each other's names]] in the same fashion as the film.
* NWordPrivileges: In 1969, in the U.K., in the course of being interviewed by a Nova magazine reporter, Yoko said, "... woman is the nigger of the world"; three years later, John published the song "Woman is the Nigger of the World" (1972) - about the virtually universal exploitation of woman - proved socially and politically controversial to U.S. sensibilities. It's worth noting, though, that many prominent black entertainers of the day were among the most ardent defenders of the song.
* PosthumousCollaboration: ''Milk and Honey'' with Yoko Ono
* PrecisionFStrike: Twice in "Working Class Hero".
* ProtestSong: Many. ''Some Time in New York City'', in fact, was basically an entire protest album. Lennon's strident advocacy during this period helped make ''Some Time in New York City'' a critical and commercial failure.
** He learned the lesson and later protest songs like "Bring on the Lucie (Freeda People)" from ''Music/MindGames'' work better in pop song terms.
* PungeonMaster: He was very fond of playing around with words. His books and other non-music writing practically overdose on puns.
* RaceFetish: He divorced his English wife for the Japanese Yoko Ono
** He even dated a Chinese American woman named May Pang when he and Ono briefly separated.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Lennon liked to write in the first person. As his career went on and especially after he met Yoko Ono his music became more personal and even exhibitionistic, with a lot of songs dealing with his relationship with her and his own search for truth, love and wisdom in life.
* [[TheReasonYouSuckSpeech "The Reason You Suck" Song]]: "How Do You Sleep?", from 1971's ''Imagine'', directed toward Music/PaulMcCartney at the depth of their mutual hatred. A response to Paul's "Too Many People" from ''Music/{{Ram}}'', released earlier the same year. (The two buried the hatchet a few years later.)
** ''Plastic Ono Band'', to the fans, the Beatles, everyone and everything who ever crossed him, pissed him off or that he had ever believed in over the course of his life to that point.
** "Steel And Glass" from the ''Walls And Bridges'' album. Reputedly a TakeThat against Allen Klein, the latter-period Beatles/Apple manager.
* SignificantBirthDate: John Lennon (1940) and his youngest son Sean (1975) were both born on October 9.
* SillyLoveSongs: The inspiration behind the {{Trope Namer|s}}. John criticised Music/PaulMcCartney for writing "silly love songs"... and so Paul wrote a song with that exact title.
** Not that Lennon himself was entirely immune to these. "Woman", anyone? "Dear Yoko"?
* SoloSideProject: Released four solo albums while still being a part of the Beatles.
* StudioChatter: "This is it boys. Over the hill." from "Bring on the Lucie (Freda Peeple)" from ''Music/MindGames''.
* ThreeChordsAndTheTruth: ''Plastic Ono Band''.
* TitleOnlyChorus: "Well Well Well"
* VoiceTypes: Baritone.
* WordSaladLyrics: "I Am the Walrus," "What's the New Mary Jane," "[[Music/AbbeyRoad Come Together]]," "Sun King," "Give Peace a Chance," the chorus to "#9 Dream." Amusingly, "I Am The Walrus" became an example of this trope solely to spite people who he felt were over-analyzing Beatles lyrics.
** To an extent, "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds."
* WorkingClassHero: TropeNamer. Ironically, "Working Class Hero" is a subversion in which the working class are duped into feeling like heroes by those with power:
-->[[BreadAndCircuses Keep you doped with religion and sex and TV]]\\
And you think you're so clever and classless and free\\
But you're still [[PrecisionFStrike fucking]] peasants [[TheReasonYouSuckSpeech as far as I can see]]
* WhamEpisode: "God":
-->"I don't believe in Elvis\\
I don't believe in [[Music/BobDylan Zimmerman]]\\
I don't believe in Beatles\\
I just believe in me\\
Yoko and me\\
And that's reality"
* YoungFutureFamousPeople: ''Film/NowhereBoy'' is a film starring [[Film/KickAss Aaron Johnson]] released in 2009 (in the U.K.; 2010 everywhere else) based on John Lennon's early life. Co-starring [[WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb Thomas Sangster]] as Music/PaulMcCartney.
** Also ''Film/{{Backbeat}}'', starring Ian Hart as UsefulNotes/{{Hamburg}}-era Lennon and Stephen Dorff as his friend/bandmate Stu Sutcliffe.
*** Prior to ''Backbeat'', Hart had also played Lennon in ''The Hours and Times'', a short film about a holiday in Spain Lennon took with Beatles manager Brian Epstein.