Friday, January 11, 2013

Julian Lennon - Too Late for Goodbyes

So what is it like to be the first son of a rock legend?  Well ... for Julian Lennon (son of John), it means that a drawing you did as a child became the inspiration for "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds."  And when you were sad during your parents divorce, a band mate of your dad's wrote "Hey Jude" for you.  Pretty heady stuff.

It also means that when you decide to become a musician, everything you do will be compared to your dad. Especially when your voice sounds like his and when your first album comes out a few short years after his death.

Welcome to the life of Julian Lennon.

In spite of this, Julian Lennon's first album, Valotte (named after the French ch√Ęteau when Lennon had stayed) is a solid effort.  It also sold well -- the album reached #17 on the charts and went platinum, spawning 3 top 40 hits -- the title cut (#9), "Too Late for Goodbyes" (#5) and "Say You're Wrong (#21).

Unfortunately, Lennon was not able to duplicate this success.  He released three additional albums through 1991, with each LP performing worse than the previous one.  Lennon then left the industry for seven years, before releasing Photograph Smile in 1998.  When it did not sell particularly well, he again left the industry, and became involved in photography, several internet businesses and charitable work.  He has had a somewhat higher profile lately, and released another album in 2011, but has had little commercial success of late.

Cool trivia facts:  the videos for "Too Late for Goodbyes" and "Valotte" were directed by Sam Peckinpah, best-known for the 1969 western The Wild Bunch.

Special shout out to eagle-eyed viewer Corky, who pointed out that Martin Briley (featured on ERV in October 2011 for "Salt of My Tears") can be seen on the video at 0:08.  Briley was a successful studio musician and played guitar on the studio version of "Too Late for Goodbyes."

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