Today would have been acclaimed co-founding member of The Beatles, guitarist John Lennon’s 77th birthday. The talented musician was 40-years-old when he was tragically murdered on December 8, 1980 outside of his home at the Dakota hotel in New York City. Lennon was survived by his sons Julian Lennon and Sean Ono Lennon as well as his widow and artistic collaborator Yoko Ono.
The impressive body of work Lennon left from his time as one of The Fab Four and his remarkable solo career has served as a source of inspiration for countless musicians around the world. To celebrate what would have been John’s 77th today, below is a series of seven live performances of songs written by the late great iconoclast.
From Lennon’s contributions to The Beatles catalog there is video of a 2014 performance by Umphrey’s McGee at The Beacon Theatre in New York City of “I Am The Walrus.” There’s also an excerpt from Phish’s performance of “Julia” from their landmark 1994 Halloween concert covering the White Album.
Audio of Phish guitarist Trey Anastasio welcoming Dave Matthews to join the Trey Anastasio Band on February 28, 2001 for a cover of Lennon’s solo single “Whatever Gets You Through The Night” is featured. Officially shared footage of Gov’t Mule’s 2013 Gathering Of The Vibes performance of “Working Class Hero” can also be found below.
The final two clips are solo performances held by My Morning Jacket frontman Jim James and Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder. James can be seen performing “Give Peace A Chance” with Brandi Carlile and Joe Russo from this year’s Lockn’ Festival, while Vedder can be seen performing “Imagine” in Portugal in 2014. Check out the covers below: