Hello, there! You may have noticed that “Whatever happened to….” Wednesday took a little vacation. That was not intended, but between my retail job kicking off our busiest season on Black Friday, and me personally battling a RAGING sinus infection (one that is *still* with me, and appears to still kick my ass every now and then), I just let it slide.
But it’s here again now, and I’ve reached back into the 80s for this week’s edition. Without further ado: Whatever happened to….
Despite the commercial success of 1984′s Valotte, Julian Lennon is perhaps better-known for being the eldest son of the legendary John Lennon than for his own music and entertainment career. It’s almost easy to see why, due to Julian’s striking resemblance, both physically and vocally, to his famous late father.
So, I was a teenager when Valotte was released, and remember the two videos which were released in conjunction with the singles, “Valotte” and “Too Late for Goodbyes”, being on near-constant rotation on MTV. This wasn’t the type of music I was into at all as a teenager, so I never quite came to appreciate Julian Lennon’s music much past the haunting vocal similarity John Lennon. Therefore, Julian Lennon was not an artist I really paid much attention to over the years.
That’s a shame, really, because he does have an incredible voice. He’s actively released music since Valotte (six subsequent albums, to be exact, and songs appearing on several movie soundtracks from the 80s to date), but nothing has reached Valotte‘s level of commercial success. In fact, I could only find one song not on Valotte to include on this playlist. It is 1991′s “Saltwater”, off Help Yourself, and definitely worth a listen. You can listen to more of his music and see some videos at his website, julianlennon.com. You’ll hear the same distinctive voice and musical style as nearly 30 years ago, but the current songs manage to sound timeless rather than redundant.
I mentioned that Mr. Lennon has had songs appear on several movie soundtracks, but did I also mention that he’s appeared in movies as well? No? Well, he has. He’s been in several, including an appearance as a bartender in 1995′s Academy- and Golden Globe-winning Leaving Las Vegas, provided voice work in some animated features, and is the producer of the award-winning documentary WhaleDreamers.
Julian is also an accomplished photographer whose work has been exhibited in the Morrison Hotel Gallery, and, like his father, an active philanthropist, founding the White Feather Foundation in 2009.
He obviously continues to be quite busy musically, artistically, and in establishing his own legacy.
Have a listen to a few of his songs:
2. Too Late For Goodbyes