It Was Thirty Years Ago Today


On Dec. 8, 1980, John Lennon was shot to death by Mark David Chapman outside the Dakota on the Upper West Side in Manhattan. It still seems so miserably sad, and senseless, after all these years.

I remember where I was when I heard the news: At Pat's Steaks in South Philadelphia, on a late night cheese steak run after seeing my first Springsteen show at the Spectrum. The guys in the E Street Band must have also had the munchies after a long night on the job, because they were there too. Then the word spread through the crowd about what had happened, and everybody got impossibly bummed out and headed home into the December night.

At the time, I was just getting into the Lennon solo albums, and realizing that George was no longer my favorite Beatle. There's a lot of competition, from "Mind Games," and "Remember" and "Crippled Inside" and "Mother" and "Well Well Well" and "Stand By Me," but "Jealous Guy" is my favorite Lennon solo track.  

Previously: Patti Smith Reads