How John Lennon Surprised George Harrison the Last Time They Met

John Lennon and George Harrison kept in touch after The Beatles broke up in 1970. While they took their time resolving their relationships with Paul McCartney, they had no problems with each other. They sent postcards and collaborated.

John even surprised George the last time they met.

John Lennon and George Harrison during the filming of 'Magical Mystery Tour' in 1967.
John Lennon and George Harrison | Keystone Features/Getty Images

John Lennon and George Harrison kept in touch in the 10 years between The Beatles’ split and John’s death in 1980

A year after The Beatles broke up, John invited George to come to play on his song, “How Do You Sleep?”

Later, John and George kept in touch. In a 1979 interview, Rolling Stone asked George if he kept in contact with the other Beatles.

“Paul and Ringo I see from time to time,” he replied. “I haven’t seen John for a couple of years. I get post cards from him – it sounds like the Rutles [smiling], but he keeps in touch with tapping on the table and post cards.”

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John surprised George the last time they met

When John last saw George is unknown. However, George talked about his final meeting with his ex-bandmate during an interview in 1990 (per Entertainment Weekly). John surprised George.

“I was in New York at his house at the Dakota,” George said. “He was nice, he was just sort of running around the house making dinner.

“[But] I hadn’t seen him for so long. I didn’t see him for two years anyway, occasionally maybe send a postcard, and it’s knowing that he’s on the other end of the telephone if you do want to call…”

According to Far Out Magazine, George added, “He was actually playing a lot of Indian music, which surprised me, because he always used to be like a little bit (annoyed) when I was playing it. So he had hundreds of cassettes of all kinds of stuff. He grew into it.”

John and George might not have bonded over Indian music so much, but they did connect on Indian religion and spirituality. They were the only Beatles to take meditation seriously while the band stayed at the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram in Rishikesh in 1968.

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John’s death initially shocked and angered his fellow Beatle

John was once on the other end of a phone call for George, but that all changed when Mark David Chapman murdered him in front of his New York City apartment, the Dakota.

A dreadful phone call woke George and his wife, Olivia, up that night. The news of this friend’s death shocked him.

George explained on Aspel and Co., “I didn’t take the call. Olivia took the call, and she said, ‘John’s been shot.’ And I thought, ‘Oh, how bad is it?’ I just thought maybe a flesh wound or something like that, but she said, ‘No, that’s it, he’s dead.’

“I just went back to sleep, actually. Maybe it was just a way of getting away from it. I just went to sleep and waited to see what it said the next morning, and he was still dead the next morning, unfortunately.”

When the shock set in, George was mostly upset that Chapman had cheated John out of a peaceful death. Then, when his anger settled, George realized that John would be OK. “I feel not so bad about it…,” he continued on Aspel and Co. “The soul is in these three bodies, and one body falls off. I feel like that; I can feel him around here.”

However, George had to get used to his friend not being on the other end of a phone call. In his 1990 interview, he said, “Now you need the big cosmic telephone to speak to him. We’ll meet again somewhere down the line.”

John and George did eventually meet again following George’s death in 2001.

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