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John Lennon’s son Julian sang a cover of his late father’s song “Imagine” at a fundraiser for Ukraine.
The performance marked the first time that Julian has sung his father’s song. Lennon was shot and killed in 1980 at the age of 40.
Julian had previously vowed to never sing the song unless it was the “End of the World.”
The 59-year-old singer-songwriter was joined by acoustic guitarist Nuno Bettencourt.
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“The War on Ukraine is an unimaginable tragedy… As a human, and as an artist, I felt compelled to respond in the most significant way I could. So today, for the first time ever, I publicly performed my Dad’s song, ‘IMAGINE,'” Julian wrote Friday on YouTube.
“Why now, after all these years? – I had alowys [sic] said, that the only time I would ever consider singing ‘IMAGINE’ would be if it was the ‘End of the World’…”
“But also because his lyrics reflect our collective desire for peace worldwide,” he continued. “Because within this song, we’re transported to a space, where love and togetherness become our reality, if but for a moment in time…”
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Julian went on to explain that the song “Imagine” represents the “light at the end of the tunnel” amid the war in Ukraine.
“The song reflects the light at the end of the tunnel, that we are all hoping for… As a result of the ongoing murderous violence, millions of innocent families, have been forced to leave the comfort of their homes, to seek asylum elsewhere.”
“I’m calling on world leaders and everyone who believes in the sentiment of ‘IMAGINE,’ to stand up for refugees everywhere! Please advocate and donate from the heart.”
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Julian’s performance was part of the Stand Up For Ukraine pledging campaign led by Global Citizen. The fundraising effort was broadcast from Warsaw, Poland, on April 9.
The event raised $10.1 billion in grants and loans, according to Global Citizen. The money will support refugees by “providing accommodation and economic security” and “support” for grassroots campaigns.