Yoko Ono Celebrates John Lennon's 78th Birthday With New Version of 'Imagine': Listen

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Yoko Ono introduces a special screening of 'GasLand' as part of the BFI Screen Epiphanies series at BFI Southbank on June 22, 2013 in London.

On what would have been John Lennon's 78th birthday, Yoko Ono decided to re-imagine the former Beatles' biggest hit by releasing her own version of "Imagine" on Tuesday (Oct. 9). 

She unveiled a delicate, slowed-down rendition of the classic that will be featured on her forthcoming album, Warzone, due out Oct. 19. Creating a new arrangement for the song, Ono explores ambient tones as she recites the iconic lyrics in a slower pace than the original. Halfway through the single, the gentle soundscapes are substituted by the track's famous piano chords. 

As Lennon said in past interviews, Ono is actually a co-writer of the peace-anthem, but was never credited properly. “That should be credited as a Lennon-Ono song because a lot of it -- the lyric and the concept -- came from Yoko,” Lennon told the BBC in 1980. “But those days I was a bit more selfish, a bit more macho, and I sort of omitted to mention her contribution.”

 

In 2017, Ono was officially added as a co-writer of "Imagine" and 47 years after the song's birth, she decided to release her own rendition. Warzone marks Ono’s first solo album since her 2013’s Take Me to the Land of Hell and will feature 13 re-imagined original songs, all using stripped-down arrangements that emphasize her candid vocals. 

Listen to Yoko Ono's new rendition of "Imagine" below.