Julian Lennon

by Mike Huberty
January 2010

Julian Lennon - photo by Timothy White

Julian Lennon
photo by Timothy White

Standing in the shadow of your father is difficult for almost anyone, but particularly if your father was one of the most famous, loved, and respected musicians in the world. JULIAN LENNON achieved fame on his own in the early 1980s’s with the Grammy-nominated platinum album, Valotte. In the ensuing years, he has retired and unretired from the music business several times, sailed around the world, and has ventured into the world of acting and film production. In the Fall of 2009, his childhood friend, Lucy Vodden (on who he based his drawing that would inspire the Beatles’ song, “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds”) died of lupus and he decided to write a song in her honor and donate the proceeds to research against the disease. This coincided with the launch of his latest project, theRevolution.com, an Internet-based independent record label of which his single is the first release.

“Basically, I got so tired and fed up with the industry as it was being run so many years ago for so many reasons.”, Lennon explains as to why he thought that theRevolution.com was needed.  I just didn’t feel that the artist was getting a fair deal and/or control of their work in any way, shape or form… I believe, of the labels as we know them, they’re very much becoming more like catalog companies just raking in the publishing, etc., from previously signed artists. I think the new artists these days need. I think, obviously, they have the internet out there to do what they will with it.  But I still think that needs, to a degree, a great deal of managing and looking after and taking care of.  It’s a big wide world out there in the internet world, and that still needs to be looked after and strategized, and that’s part of what theRevolution does.“

Lennon recorded the new EP, Lucy, with a new artist, James Scott Cook, who Lennon recently met. ”We’ve only been friends two months“, he says, ”we actually met in New York several months ago when I was passing through. He was in the studio as a developing artist, and I literally said, ‘Let me come into the studio and sing a couple of backgrounds and support you in that respect.’  And it was only after finding out about Lucy Vodden that I suggested that why don’t we try and make the song, which was applicable to Lucy, why don’t we make it a duet and make it a charity single for lupus.  During that process is when we found out about his 89 year-old grandmother having lupus as well and her name being Lucy as well. So it was very much a time and a place and, obviously, the stars aligned.“

And with theRevolution, Lennon is learning from his years of disappointments working with the traditional music industry, as he explains the concept, ”The idea literally is to help the artist setup their own company for themselves. TheRevolution is an umbrella for artists. What we try to do is help you set your own company up. As the artist, you put in your work, your rights and your brand into the company and what we try to do is support you in that.  We make an evaluation, I guess, of your brand and your work and then, basically, give you as an artist an offer to sort of be involved and purchase an interest in your new company and become your partner really.  There’s another subsidiary company, which we have which is more fulfilled for sort of almost a managerial role, which is called The Artist Alliance, which we then try to help you market and sell your music and your brand. The benefits of that are having the creative control of your career, your money and how you want to do things. You also have access to how things are being done, what they’re costing, the money that you’re making directly and clearly and transparently. So there’s no hidden agenda here. We’re all onboard together in this. I think that’s something that’s not quite been done before in the way that we’re trying to achieve things.“

With a new album forthcoming, a current EP, and a brand new Internet record label, Lennon is in the limelight more now than he’s been since his Behind The Music special in 2001. The album, Everything Changes is scheduled to come out in the Spring of 2010. He also mentions that theRevolution.com will be looking for new artists starting in the New Year. Lennon describes what he’s looking for, ”For me it’s always been about I want to feel some emotion. I want to hear some heart in there.“

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Julian Lennon
CD: Lucy Record Label: theRevolution
Purchase Lucy on Amazon