Sunday Cinema | John Lennon Jams With Frank Zappa

Thirty-three years ago this evening John Lennon was tragically taken from this world thanks to a demented madman who just wanted attention. Lennon’s death was senseless, and we were robbed of many years of genius, while his family was robbed of a father and a husband.

Lennon was a complex man, as most musical geniuses are, which was bore out when he and wife Yoko Ono had an encounter with Frank Zappa in 1971. FZ was scheduled to do an interview with Howard Stein, when the interviewer brought over Lennon and Ono to his hotel room. After the interview was finished, Zappa invited John and Yoko to jam with The Mothers at the Fillmore East that night. The pair wound up performing with Zappa and The Mothers for a mostly bizarre 40-minute jam that included lots of screeching from Yoko. A nine-minute clip from the performance is available on YouTube:

Sadly, Frank’s experience with the pair wasn’t a good one. Jerry Garcia, thankfully, had a better experience with Lennon.

The night Lennon died Stevie Wonder was performing in Oakland and told his stunned crowd the news: