Death themes in Lennon's last songs

Click to follow
The Independent Culture

One of the last songs written by John Lennon was released for the first time yesterday and suggests the singer had a premonition of his death.

One of the last songs written by John Lennon was released for the first time yesterday and suggests the singer had a premonition of his death.

In the song, "Help Me to Help Myself", Lennon refers to being hounded by the "angel of destruction" and chants "oh help me, Lord".

The track is included on a reissued version of his last album Double Fantasy, which was released yesterday to mark what would have been his 60th birthday. Lyrics include the lines: "Well, I tried so hard to stay alive/ But the angel of destruction keeps on hounding me, all around/ But I know in my heart that we never really parted."

A spokesman for his record label, Parlophone, said it was "spooky" that his words could be interpreted as a reference to his death.

The reissued album also includes the last track Lennon completed on the night he died, 8 December 1980. He and his wife, Yoko Ono, were working on the song, "Walking On Thin Ice", shortly before they left their apartment in the Dakota building in New York and he was shot by Mark Chapman.

Chapman, who was turned down for parole last week, was carrying a copy of the Double Fantasy sleeve, which he asked the musician to sign shortly before shooting him.

Ms Ono said of "Help Me to Help Myself": "He was playing this on the piano at home, half-laughing and saying, 'Wouldn't it be something if we ever put this out?'. They say that people start to think of God near death. It's possible that was the case here. Whatever he was thinking he was doing, it is a beautiful song and I wanted to share it with you... I'm so happy that John's 60th birthday is getting so much attention and love from people all over the world."

Comments