John Lennon & Yoko Ono's "Imagine" Turns 50 Today

Article Contributed by Universal Musi… | Published on Thursday, September 9, 2021

Today, September 9th, marks the 50th anniversary of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s classic song “Imagine,” and the album of the same name.

First released in 1971, the iconic track has become one of the most recognized and popular global anthems for peace and has been covered by more than 200 other artists including Neil Young, Madonna, Elton John and Lady Gaga. Most recently it was re-imagined by Hans Zimmer in the dazzling opening ceremony of the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, watched by an audience of hundreds of millions.

In celebration of the song’s power and resonance on this 50th anniversary, the most poignant and well-known lyric from the track has been projected on to equally iconic buildings and sites around the world.

“IMAGINE ALL THE PEOPLE LIVING LIFE IN PEACE” has appeared as a digital projection on the Houses of Parliament and St Paul’s Cathedral in London and on the Liver Building and the Museum of Liverpool in John’s home city.

It has also appeared on the Berlin Wall and on digital billboards in Times Square in New York and near the historic Nihonbashi bridge in Tokyo.

These projections echo a similar billboard campaign Yoko undertook 20 years ago when exactly the same wording was used in prominent sites around the world.

Yoko Ono Lennon said today; “John would have loved this. ‘Imagine’ embodied what we believed together at the time. We are still together now and we still believe this. The sentiment is just as important now as when it was written and released 50 years ago.”

50th anniversary of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s classic song “Imagine,”

Today, Yoko Ono Lennon, Sean Ono Lennon, Mercury Studios, Tim’s Twitter Listening Party, The Coda Collection, AXS TV, WDR/ARD, Hard Rock, Sage Gateshead, Music Venue Trust and Universal Music Group invite you to join us for a Global Party to celebrate the 50th anniversary of John & Yoko’s Imagine – the song, the album, the film.

“John and I were both artists and we were living together, so we inspired each other. The song ‘Imagine’ embodied what we believed together at the time. John and I met – he comes from the West and I come from the East – and still we are together. We have this oneness and ‘the whole world would eventually become one’ is the sense that we will all be very happy together. All these instructions are for people for how to spend eternity, because we have lots of time.”

– Yoko Ono Lennon