erik lundegaard

John Lennon on the 'Happy Days' Set

This photo was posted on Facebook via The REAL Peter Tork:

John Lennon on the Happy Days set


“Happy Days had just been on the air a short time in 1974 when the cast noticed a familiar looking man hanging around in the studio one day. It was none other than former Beatle John Lennon, along with his then 10-year-old son Julian. ... Lennon stuck around for the entire day of shooting, drawing doodles for the crew and hanging out until they wrapped the shoot after some 12 hours...”

From the looks of it, this was from Lennon's “Rock n' Roll” period. Was he still on the outs with Yoko then? Hanging out with May Pang?

Yes. Just did the Google search. According to BuzzFeed, it was taken in January 1974.

So this was kind of a low point for him (artistically, personally) and a high point for “Happy Days.” The early shows were quite good, and the title almost ironic. Things invariably went badly for Richie, but he had family to fall back on. It was only when the show shifted from Richie-centric to Fonz-centric that it lost its sense of irony and became a huge hit. 

But that photo's nuts. Isn't it? It's like some odd amalgamation of my childhood/teen years. It would be like a photo of Evel Knievel hanging out with the Twins at Met Stadium. Or Thor Heyerdahl and Lindsay Wagner visiting “The Planet of the Apes” set. Worlds colliding.

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Posted at 08:09 AM on Sat. Jul 26, 2014 in category Photo of the Day  


Mister B wrote:

...and Lennon seemed to kind of fit in with the 50s vibe of the clothing, hair, etc. of the show, didn't he? Seems like he could've been a character on the show once or twice. I'd certainly rather hear him sing than Anson Williams.

Comment posted on Sat. Jul 26, 2014 at 10:13 PM

Erik wrote:

I think Lennon looked that way because he was making his Rock 'n' Roll record. That might even be why he visited the set. To pick up on the vibe.

Comment posted on Sun. Jul 27, 2014 at 06:36 AM

Bizarro Roy Orbison wrote:

Yes that photo is nuts, and thanks for passing it along. But nothing beats this one, which I can't help thinking of as The Bizarro Traveling Wilburys:


Contemplating that photo on its own can be disorienting, so here's a bit of context:

Comment posted on Wed. Jul 30, 2014 at 10:02 AM

Erik wrote:

The second link (which I can't access or reproduce myself) is to the Wiki page of The Hollywood Vampires, a hard-drinking group of musicians in LA in the early 1970s. The first link works. It's some of the Hollywood vampires, including Lennon, Anne Murray (Anne MURRAY?) and Alice Cooper. Oh, Mickey Dolenz of the Monkees, too.

I wonder if they tried to recruit anyone from “Happy Days”? Potsie was a singer. What about Leather Tuscadero?

Comment posted on Wed. Jul 30, 2014 at 10:11 AM

B.R.O. wrote:

Sorry about the link. Should've used this one, it's a better explanation with some interesting personal observations:

And yeah, Leather and Pinkie Tuscadero should've made the cut.

Comment posted on Wed. Jul 30, 2014 at 10:30 AM
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