"What I'd have liked would have been
the money and the hit records without the fame."
"I'm not afraid of death because I don't
believe in it. It's just getting out of one car, and into
"I wouldn't say I was a born writer; I'm
a born thinker."
"Art is only a way of expressing pain."
"Newspaper people have a habit of putting
you in the front pages to sell their papers, and then after
they've sold their papers and got big circulation's, they
say, 'Look at what we've done for you."
"My defences were so great. The cocky rock and roll
hero who knows all the answers was actually a terrified guy
who didn't know how to cry. Simple."
"I don't intend to be a performing flea any more. I
was the dreamweaver, but although I'll be around I don't
intend to be running at 20,000 miles an hour trying to prove
myself. I don't want to die at 40."
"The postman wants an autograph. The cab driver wants
a picture. The waitress wants a handshake. Everyone wants
a piece of you."
"I really had a chip on my shoulder, ... and it still
comes out every now and then."
“What we’ve got to do is keep hope alive. Because
without it we’ll sink.”
Reporter: "They think your haircuts are un-American."
John Lennon: "Well, it was very observant of them because we aren't American,
"A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you
dream together is reality."
"What I used to be is guilty about money. That's why
I lost it, either by giving it away or by allowing myself
to be screwed by so-called managers."
"You're in a fishbowl so make use of it, man."
"I never listen to the radio. If it's bad, I make fun of
it, and if it's good, I get jealous that I didn't think of
"The more I see the less I know for sure."
"The thing the sixties did was to show us the possibilities
and the responsibility that we all had. It wasn’t the
answer. It just gave us a glimpse of the possibility."
"Nobody controls me. I'm uncontrollable. The only one
who can control me is me."
"I once received a bra... with "I Love John" embroidered
on it. It thought it was pretty original. I didn't keep it,
mind you - it didn't fit. "
"Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted."
"Reality leaves a lot to the imagination."
"I hate Shakespeare; I don’t care whether you
should like him or not. I don’t know if it’s
because of school or because it doesn’t mean anything
"You make your own dream. That's the Beatles' story,
isn't it? That's Yoko's story. That's what I'm saying now.
Produce your own dream. If you want to save Peru, go save
Peru. It's quite possible to do anything, but not to put
it on the leaders and the parking meters. Don't expect Jimmy
Carter or Ronald Reagan or John Lennon or Yoko Ono or Bob
Dylan or Jesus Christ to come and do it for you. You have
to do it yourself."
"Possession isn't nine-tenths of the law its nine-tenths
of the problem."
"Happiness is just how you feel when you don't feel miserable."
"It doesn't matter how long my hair is or what colour
my skin is or whether I'm a woman or a man."
"I am a violent man who has learned not to be violent
and regrets his violence."
"Don't believe that jazz about there's nothing you can do,
'turn on and drop out, man'-because you've got to turn on
and drop in, or they're going to drop all over you."
"It's better to fade away like an old soldier than
to burn out. I don't appreciate worship of dead Sid Vicious
or of dead James Dean or of dead John Wayne. It's the same
thing. Making Sid Vicious a hero, Jim Morrison — it's
garbage to me. I worship the people who survive. Gloria Swanson,
Question: "Do you have a picture of ``when I'm sixty-four''?"
John Lennon : "No, no. I hope we're a nice old couple living off the
coast of Ireland or something like that - looking at our scrapbook of madness."
"I've always considered my work one piece and I consider
that my work won't be finished until I am dead and buried
and I hope that's a long, long time."
Interview with RKO Radio on the day of his murder (December