The Beatles had many admirers who loved their music, unique look, and vibrant attitude. However, only one person had such a hold on the group’s leader John Lennon that they had the arduous task of keeping him from “going off the rails” during the group’s young and wild days.
The Beatles traveled to Hamburg, Germany in 1960
The band, whose members initially included George Harrison, Lennon, Paul McCartney, Pete Best, and Stu Sutcliffe, traveled to Germany with the promise of more work due to a lack of gigs in their native Liverpool, England. Then-manager Alan Williams booked the tour, and the group played from The group’s contract was to run for two months, from August through October of 1960.
The band kept a grueling schedule. They performed four hours sets totaling four and a half hours each weekday evening and five sets for a total of six hours on the weekends.
It was in Hamburg that the Beatles honed their live act. They learned to react to what the other was doing musically. Soon this became instinctual, and after their first tour, they became a tight musical unit.
Over the next two years, the budding British rock stars continued to perform regularly in the German city. Sutcliffe died in 1962. Ringo Starr would replace Best.
Only one person could keep John Lennon from reportedly ‘going off the rails’
Playwright Mike Howl, who wrote the stage production of This Girl, a tribute to the life and influence of Cynthia Lennon on the life of her famous husband, claimed that it was she who held power to keep her husband from “going off the rails.”
“I want to get across how important she was in John’s life, and not just because of their son Julian,” said playwright Mike Howl in an interview with The Guardian.
“John used to write to her every single day while he was out in Hamburg, playing in the nightclubs of the Reeperbahn,” Howl explained.
“Her friends told me they saw some of these letters. I do think that without Cynthia’s love, John would have gone completely off the rails.
“Their relationship helped to keep the Beatles together for as long as they were,” said Howl.
Cynthia Lennon witnessed The Beatles’ transformation into global superstars
John and Cynthia met when both were students at a Liverpool, England art school in 1957. Their romantic relationship blossomed quickly
In August 1962, John married Cynthia at the Mount Pleasant register office in Liverpool after discovering Cynthia was pregnant with their only child. They would later welcome a son named Julian.
Their relationship withstood Lennon’s one-night stands when the Beatles found international success.
However, in 1968, after John fell in love with Yoko Ono, Cynthia and John divorced.
John Lennon was killed by shot and fatally wounded by an obsessed fan in 1980 at the age of 40 as he was walking into his home in New York City.
Cynthia Lennon remarried twice more before her death in 2015 at 75 from cancer.
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