THE PLASTIC ONO SUPERGROUP LIVE
Dec. 15th 1969 @ Lyceum Ballroom, London
By Madeline Bocaro ©
My favorite music of ALL TIME was recorded on December 15, 1969 and released as a bonus disc with John and Yoko’s Sometime in New York City album in 1972.
Two Beatles (John and George) appeared together for the first time since they stopped touring over 3 years prior. This was a charity gig for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). The concert was billed as PEACE FOR CHRISTMAS.
Here are FILM CLIPS of the concert on Ritchie Yorke’ site!!! Only 1 minute 20 seconds, but it has clips of ‘Cold Turkey’ AND ‘Don’t Worry Kyoko’!!! J&Y are both wearing white suits, and Yoko looks so BEAUTIFUL!
You can see George Harrison and the TWO drummers! This is the first appearance of the WAR IS OVER! posters. John and Yoko’s worldwide poster campaign was launched on this day.
At the start, after screaming “John I love you” Yoko screams, “Britain! You killed Hanratty you murderers – you killed Hanratty!” Then the chilling ‘Don’t Worry Kyoko’ starts and you can die at the end of it knowing you heard the best thing ever!!! In the second half of the song, Yoko sings, “ Don’t Worry Jonas” referring to her friend and collaborator – avant-garde cinematographer Jonas Mekas.I wish this part was in the video, but it must exist somewhere!!!
For “Cold Turkey”, Yoko sat inside a white bag at John’s feet. During “Don’t Worry Kyoko”, she jumped out of the bag, facing the crowd, and proceeded to scream at them. As the latter song was reaching the end of its performance, Yoko broke down crying.
John: “It was a FANTASTIC show – very heavy. A lot of the audience walked out you know, but the ones that stayed – they were in a TRANCE man. They just all came to the front because it was one of the first real heavy rock shows where we had a good, good backing… Some of those kids – they were really young- it was a UNICEF concert show or something. Some of those kids formed those freaky bands later. Because there were about 200 kids at the front there, some were about 13, 14, 15 who were looking at Yoko and looking at us the way we were playing that ‘Don’t Worry Kyoko’ and it really reached a peak of (whatever you call it) it really went out there that night. And I often think I wonder if… you know I hear touches of our early stuff in a lot of the punk/new wave stuff – I hear licks and flicks coming out. It pleases me, it pleases both of us. I’d love to know were they in the audience and did somebody go and form a group in London because it sure as hell sounds like it.”
– John Lennon, @ The Hit Factory, December 6, 1980
John and Yoko distributed flyers – thrown out amongst the crowd. They read, “Love and Peace John and Yoko” on the front, and on the back was the Hare Krishna Mantra, which was most likely George Harrison’s idea. (see below)
The Hanratty connection:
THE MURDERER WHOSE REPUTATION JOHN LENNON WORKED TO RESTORE:
The Plastic Ono Supergroup, Lyceum Ballroom London – December 1969