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John Lennon Released 'Imagine' The Same Year NPR Debuted Original Programming

A crowd rallying for John Lennon, in a scene from the film <em>Imagine: John Lennon.</em>
Michael Ochs Archives
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Getty Images
A crowd rallying for John Lennon, in a scene from the film Imagine: John Lennon.

We're celebrating NPR's 50th anniversary by revisiting cultural milestones from the year we began broadcasting.

"My mother and father believed very much in the power of conceptual thinking," Sean Ono Lennon, John Lennon and Yoko Ono's son, explains of the inspiration for his parents' song. "We're listening to someone who isn't naive, and isn't saying these things from a kind of arrogance, or ignorance."

On this day, 50 years ago, John Lennon's album Imagine — along with its utopian title track — was released. Let's listen back.

Listen to the broadcast of this story in the player above.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.