Starting Over
Ken Sharp
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Buy *Starting Over: The Making of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Double Fantasy

Starting Over: The Making of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Double Fantasy
Ken Sharp
MTV Books
272 pages
October 2010
rated 5 of 5 possible stars

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There is no better chronicler in the business than Ken Sharp and here he brings his sharpest skills to construct a narrative tale about John Lennon's seminal Double Fantasy album. The author, one of the most respected music journalists working today, has assembled all the key characters who were somehow involved in the album's creation. Amongst the subjects Sharp interviews are: Jack Douglas (producer); David Geffen (record label owner); and an assortment of musicians including Bun E. Carlos, Rick Nielsen, Tony Levin, Andy Newmark, Earl Slick and Hugh McCracken.

Here, in the author's introduction, Sharp sets up the premise for the book:

"John Lennon is on top of the world. Double Fantasy, the music icon's first new album in five years, has just been released and is heralded as a triumphant artistic comeback, marking the artist's celebrated return to the top of the music charts. "(Just Like) Starting Over," the album's first single, is warmly embraced by rock radio and becomes a smash number one hit.

"Ensconced inside New York's Record Plant, Lennon's just finished the mix on a new Yoko Ono song, 'Walking on Thin Ice,'" which he excitedly predicts 'will be Yoko's firs number one record.' Saying a quick good-bye to producer Jack Douglas, Lennon and Ono exit the studio onto the darkened streets of New York City. They hop into a private limo, which takes the couple on a short drive back to their home at the Dakota on West Seventy-second Street. Minutes later Lennon will be shot dead at the hands of a crazed assassin.

Shortly after 11:00 p.m., Monday Night Football sportscaster Howard Cosell breaks the tragic news to a stunned nation that Lennon has been killed. Wih news of Lennon's senseless murder, Double Fantasy, his final musical statement, rockets to number one around the world."
It is a poignant and focused intro to a book that reveals as much about Lennon during his final days as any book ever written. Sharp has also tracked down some wonderful black-and-white shots of John in the studio with producers and musicians and Yoko. Read this, and you'll never listen to Double Fantasy again in the same way.

Click here for Steven Rosen's interview with Starting Over: The Making of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Double Fantasy author Ken Sharp

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at Steven Rosen, 2011

buy *Starting Over: The Making of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Double Fantasy
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