Unfinished Music No. 2: Life With the Lions
John Lennon & Yoko Ono, 1969
The photo used for the album cover is by Susan Wood, taken in Room No. 1, Second West Ward, Queen Charlotte Hospital, Hammersmith during Yoko’s troubled pregnancy in November 1968, which ended in a miscarriage on November 21.
John had begun his stay with Yoko in a bed next to hers, shown below. When the hospital needed the bed for another patient, John brought in a sleeping bag and stayed on the floor. The photos here are taken from the CD release, with additional context from Graham Calkin, here. (Tons of great stuff on his site – do click around when you have a chance!)
In the photo below, as well as John’s dirty stockinged feet on the bed, note the photos of the other three Beatles above his head! Those look like Ethan Russell’s portraits included with The White Album, which was in the mixing stages while John was making Unfinished Music, and released during Yoko’s time in the hospital.
There’s so much hype around The Beatles and so much noise around John & Yoko that it’s easy to forget that they were also humans with lives who were just trying to get through the day. These are some of my favorite photos of them.