Collective Soul’s Will Turpin lays bare admiration for John Lennon

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Founding Collective Soul bassist Will Turpin spends time dissecting John Lennon as a lyricist, father, and counterculture icon felled by an assassin’s warm gun over the course of a spellbinding feature. Seen here on the early afternoon of December 8, 1980, Rolling Stone dispatched noted photographer Annie Leibovitz to Lennon’s Dakota apartment in New York City to take a series of shots for a magazine cover story plugging the comeback “Double Fantasy” record. Proudly showing off his newly trimmed hair — cut in a 1950s style quiff — Lennon was senselessly murdered later that night. Photography by Annie Leibovitz
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On the roof of his rented East 52nd Street penthouse, a 33-year-old John Lennon is arguably at his most iconic post-Beatles during a New York City photo session for the best-selling “Walls and Bridges” album on August 29, 1974. Photography by Bob Gruen

The Will Turpin / John Lennon Interview

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The CD cover of “Working Class Hero: A Tribute to John Lennon,” distributed the day after what would have been the “Nobody Loves You When You’re Down and Out” balladeer’s 55th birthday on October 10, 1995 by Hollywood Records. Lead guitarist Rick Nielsen and drummer Bun E. Carlos of Cheap Trick, who played on the fantastic, dirty rock ’n’ roll first version of Lennon’s “I’m Losing You” that criminally sat unreleased for nearly 20 years, contributed to the compilation along with Collective Soul and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Image Credit: Universal Music Group
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And if you go chasing white rabbits, and you know you’re going to fall…The CD cover of Atlanta-based Collective Soul’s self-titled eighth studio record, unleashed on August 25, 2009, and nicknamed “Rabbit” to differentiate it from the Georgia Music Hall of Famers’ second studio set. Image Credit: Loud & Proud / Roadrunner Records
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The cover of “The Lighthouse,” a five-song EP unleashed by founding Collective Soul bassist Will Turpin on October 11, 2011. Note the silhouette of the miniature piano player tickling the ivories to the right of the candy cane-colored lighthouse— Turpin tackles keyboards on the record. Image Credit: Gooey Records
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On November 26, 1976, a 46-year-old, denim jacket-clad John Lennon greets fans near his Dakota apartment in New York City. The future “I’m Losing You” rocker had been shopping the day after Thanksgiving with wife Yoko Ono and one-year-old son Sean. Photography by George Tebbens / Beatle Photo Blog
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Bassist Will Turpin [red shirt] and former Collective Soul lead guitarist Joel Kosche [black long-sleeved shirt] listen intently as a student from SAE Institute Atlanta cuts a drum track aboard the John Lennon Educational Bus in October 2011. Image Credit: Courtesy of Will Turpin
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I don’t think you can handle this: Collective Soul bassist Will Turpin confidently grasps a counter-top in pre-publicity for the second annual “Rock the Cradle — A Live Christmas Rock Opera” charity show on December 21, 2014, at Refuge City Church at 7 Stages Theatre in Atlanta. Photography by Michie Turpin
Click to hear the best version of John Lennon’s “I’m Losing You,” cut on August 12, 1980, with Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen and drummer Bun E. Carlos at New York City’s Record Plant. Lennon adds biting rhythm electric guitar on a customized, rare Sardonyx. Music Credit: Capitol Records; Video Credit: YouTube user CheapTrick

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Retro pop culture interviews & lovin’ someone fierce sustain this University of Georgia Master of Agricultural Leadership alum. Email: jeremylr@windstream.net

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