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Two-hour John Lennon interview to be released in full for first time today

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An unedited two-hour John Lennon and Yoko Ono interview conducted in 1968 by then-college student Maurice Hindle in which the Beatle talks about songwriting, being a member of the Beatles and other topics, is being released for the first time in full on Feb. 7 by Hard Rock.com, the website announced Feb. 6 in a press release.

The two-hour interview, which has been available in excerpts in the past, will be available in its entirety in a streaming format with transcripts, analysis and a memorabilia gallery on HardRock.com, the website said.

Highlights of the interview include Lennon’s reaction to a letter in the October 1968 issue of the newspaper The Black Dwarf that accused Lennon of selling out to the establishment and claimed that the Beatlesmusic had “lost its bite”, the idea of a possible Beatles tour or live album in 1969, and his perspective on his personal success.

According to Hard Rock.com, in December, 1968, Keele University student Maurice Hindle had his letter to a Beatles fanzine requesting an interview with John Lennon was answered by Lennon himself. Maurice spent more than six hours at Lennon’s home in Surrey, England and interviewed him for two full hours. The audio tapes of the interview were acquired by Hard Rock in 1987, the website says.

Hindle, in a blog post for the Keele University website, the school he was attending at the time, recalled what led to the interview. "Without telling anyone about it, in mid-November 1968 I wrote a longish letter to both John and Yoko showing interest in their lives and work and asking if I could come and do an interview with them about how they saw ‘Revolution’ at that cultural moment. I was in my first term at Keele and living in one of the huts. Maurice Hindle at Durham I addressed the letter to them and put it in an envelope addressed to the Beatles fan club, c/o Beatles Monthly magazine (bought in Keele Shop), as I didn’t know where Lennon lived. I was amazed to find a reply to this about a week later in the Student Union pigeonholes with my name and address written on it in a scrawl I didn’t recognize. It was written by John Lennon, gave me his phone number, and suggesting I call him if I wanted to."

He said John and Yoko picked him and his two friend that came with him up from the station.

Along with the release of the interview, Hard Rock Cafe New York will host a special listening party with a free concert by The Cavern Club Beatles, the resident Beatles tribute band from Liverpool’s Cavern Club, on Feb. 9 introduced by the Lord Mayor of Liverpool. The event will also feature a live question-and-answer session with Maurice Hindle, Hard Rock’s Music and Memorabilia Historian Jeff Nolan and Beatles historian and author Andy Babiuk. Also appearing will be John Lennon’s sister, Julia Baird, who will sign her book “Imagine This – Growing Up with My Brother John Lennon.”

(You can read excerpts from the interview in a separate story.)

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