Posted this morning by David Handelman (aka wittiebanter): “Forty years ago today, John Lennon was killed. The next morning, 19-year-old college-sophomore me had a radio show to do. All the other Boston stations were playing ‘Give Peace a Chance’, ‘All You Need is Love’ and ‘Imagine.’ I felt darker than that. I played ‘Happiness is a Warm Gun’, ‘Run for Your Life’ and ‘Help!’
“Forty years later, I see Above Us Only Sky on Netflix, the Yoko-driven documentary about the making of the Imagine record at an English country house in the summer of 1971. The proceedings are shaggy and fun, George Harrison dropping by, Phil Spector at the helm, and then suddenly this unkempt, clearly troubled Vietnam Vet named Claudio shows up and insists on meeting Lennon because he believes Lennon wrote all his songs for Claudio.
HE interjection: Claudio and Mark David Chapman were more or less the same unhinged loon.
“The John-Claudio encounter is on film, and Lennon patiently hears Claudio out and tries to reason with him — ‘How could I know you?’ — and that he, like Bob Dylan, just writes things hoping people will relate. The encounter ends with Lennon telling Claudio he looks hungry and bringing him into the house for a meal.
“I read up on Claudio (here) and he worked on farms and then at a Ford auto plant. When it closed he bought himself an ultra-light airplane, flew it too low and slow and the plane stalled. It landed in a tree and tore his aorta from his heart. Dec. 22, 1981 — dead at 33.
“In light of what happened a year earlier, when another obsessed fan came with the same kind of delusional narcissistic energy and took John away from everyone else, the Claudio scene was so moving and chilling and I don’t even know what.”