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Live in New York City
Live album by John Lennon
Released 10 February 1986
Recorded 30 August 1972
Genre Rock, blues rock, hard rock, rock 'n' roll
Length 42:30
Label Parlophone/EMI
Capitol (North America)
Producer Yoko Ono
Professional reviews
John Lennon chronology
Milk and Honey
Live in New York City
Menlove Ave.

Live in New York City is a posthumous live album by John Lennon. It was prepared under the supervision of his widow, Yoko Ono, and released in 1986 as his second official live album, the first being Live Peace in Toronto 1969.

Recorded on 30 August 1972 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, Lennon performed two shows, one in the afternoon and one in the evening, to raise money for children with mental challenges at friend Geraldo Rivera's request. Rivera introduces Lennon and Ono at the beginning of the album, and he is referenced in Lennon's impromptu revised lyrics in the opening song, "New York City."

The benefit concerts, billed as One to One, also featured other performers in addition to Lennon, including Stevie Wonder, Roberta Flack and Sha-Na-Na, although their performances are not included on this album, nor on the simultaneous video release.

Live in New York City captures John Lennon's last full-length concert performance, coming right after the release of Some Time in New York City, which was seen by many as a commercial failure in the United States. Perhaps as a result, Lennon's stage talk, while humorous, is self-deprecating and slightly nervous in tone. Backing Lennon and Ono were Elephant's Memory, who had served as Lennon and Ono's backing band on Some Time in New York City. Although the material Lennon performed was largely drawn from his three most recent albums of the period (John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, Imagine and Some Time in New York City), Lennon also included in the setlist his Beatles hit "Come Together" and paid tribute to Elvis Presley with "Hound Dog" before leading the audience in a singalong of "Give Peace a Chance".

Upon its early 1986 release, Ono was criticized by former members of Elephant's Memory for using the first - and weaker - performance instead of the stronger evening show. They also took issue with the simultaneous video release of the concert, which it was alleged had been edited to show Ono as prominently as Lennon. However, in fact, on the album release, Ono's vocal performances on such numbers as "Hound Dog" had been mixed out completely. Additionally, all of her solo performances, which included "Sisters O Sisters" and "Born In A Prison", were deleted from the audio edition of the concert, in order to create a pure John Lennon album. The video release retained the complete set list including Ono's material.

Portions of the evening performance later saw release on The John Lennon Anthology.

Live in New York City reached #55 in the UK, and surprised many with its US appeal where it peaked at #41 and eventually went gold.

The concerts documented on Live in New York City were Lennon's only rehearsed and full-length live performances in his solo career, and his first - and last - formal, full-fledged live concerts since The Beatles retired from the road in 1966. Lennon never mounted a tour during his post-Beatles career. The concerts also marked the last time he would perform live with Ono, as well as the last time he would perform live with Elephant's Memory. The video has yet to see an official DVD and Blu-Ray release. The album however is available on iTunes.

Track listing

All songs by John Lennon, except where noted.

  1. "New York City" – 3:38
  2. "It's So Hard" – 3:18
  3. "Woman is the Nigger of the World" (John Lennon/Yoko Ono) – 5:30
  4. "Well Well Well" – 3:51
  5. "Instant Karma!" – 3:40
  6. "Mother" – 5:00
  7. "Come Together" (Lennon/McCartney) – 4:21
  8. "Imagine" – 3:17
  9. "Cold Turkey" – 5:29
  10. "Hound Dog" (Jerry Leiber/Mike Stoller) – 3:09
  11. "Give Peace a Chance" – 1:00 (originally credited to Lennon/McCartney, the credit was revised in the 1990s to cite only John Lennon as its composer)


  • John Lennon: vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards
  • Yoko Ono: keyboards
  • Jim Keltner: drums
  • Wayne 'Tex' Gabriel: lead guitar
  • Gary Van Scyoc: bass guitar
  • Stan Bronstein: saxophone
  • Adam Ippolito: keyboards
  • Richard Frank Jr.: drums


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