Set for publication on October 9th -- John Lennon's 72nd birthday -- will be the Yoko Ono sanctioned book, The John Lennon Letters. The book has been edited by noted Beatles author Hunter Davies and features letters sent by the late Beatle to lovers, friends, family, and fans from every point in his life, and culled from a collection over nearly 300 letters and postcards.
Hunter Davies wrote the 1968 authorized biography The Beatles, with the complete help and support of the Beatles and their families. Due to the fact that most of the group's parents were still alive, much of the book is now deemed to be "whitewashed" in places -- yet remains a perfect spot for a beginner to learn the Beatles' basic history. It broke new ground describing John Lennon and Paul McCartney's songwriting session for "With A Little Help From My Friends," among other insider reporting.
Last year, Davies spoke about The John Lennon Letters, and explained to the BBC, "I've found a lot of letters that nobody's ever seen. When he wrote a letter or a postcard to somebody, he saw it as a challenge to write a unique piece for them and to amuse them and respond to their humor."
Pattie Boyd met Lennon in 1964 on the set of A Hard Days Night, and throughout her years married to George Harrison, she spent more time with Lennon then she did with her own family. We asked her what Lennon was really like: "Very funny. Very funny. Cruel as well. If anybody got on the wrong side of him, or (if) they were complete idiots, then he wouldn't fail to let them know."
Bob Gruen took some of the most important and legendary shots of Lennon's New York City years. Because of their friendship, Gruen was able to have access to Lennon during one of the lowest points in his solo career: "When I first met him in the early-'70s with the Elephant's Memory, there was a lot of tequila involved. We referred to them as the 'tequila sessions.' We were all drinking quite a bit; there's other things that go along with drinking a lot that keep you awake and keep you going when you're doing that. We were all pretty whacked out of our heads. When I saw him in the summer of '74, after Los Angeles, he was beginning to clean up his act. Those sessions for the Walls And Bridges album, it was kinda noticeable that there wasn't a lot of booze in the studio."