Never-before-broadcast recording of 1964 John Lennon interview to go up for auction

Virgin Radio

23 Jun 2022, 07:47

The Bealtes performing in the US in 1964

Credit: Getty

An incredibly rare interview with late Beatles legend John Lennon will go under the hammer this week. 

The 1964 recording was made by then-Hull art student John Hill, who spoke to the iconic rockers right before a gig in 1964.

On the tape, a very modest Lennon tells Hill he doesn’t think the Beatles are “very good musicians” and even confessed to having a mate take his art exam for him while they were on the road touring. 

Hill rediscovered the reel-to-reel tape in 2014 after it spent five decades in a drawer, and now it’s going up for auction in Scarborough.

The now-university lecturer sold the tape to David Duggleby Auctioneers after having a clear out, and according to Hill, he got the interview after bluffing his way into the gig’s press room. 

The Beatles

Credit: Getty

He told BBC News: “I was the youngest person in the room and the only one with a microphone.

“Lennon was really interested in the [reel-to-reel] machine... we ended up in a corner doing an interview with passing newsmen throwing in the odd question."

Graham Paddison, from Duggleby Auctioneers, added: “One of the most striking things is just how relaxed the two of them were together, just two art college students chatting.

"Lennon was as friendly as could be, not flippant or jokey or clever dick, treating his young interviewer's questions with respect, which of course makes his answers interesting."

The interview tape is eight and a half minutes long, and will be auctioned off with the recording machine, photographs and student magazine articles. 

On the tape, which has never been broadcast, Lennon discussed being a musician over an entertainer, explaining: “I've never thought about it really but I suppose, we don't count ourselves as good musicians, so I suppose we're entertainers, but we don't entertain much cos we just stand there, so I suppose we must be musicians.

"We're in the Union anyway."

The John Lennon 1964 interview will go live at David Duggleby Auctioneers on Friday 24th June - check out their website for details