How John Lennon Inspired Stephen King’s ‘The Shining’

via @MARCUS VELCH | YouTube

In September 1969, John Lennon left The Beatles without making it official. Lennon wanted to take advantage of the time together with Yoko Ono but without stopping making music.

At the end of the year, he released “Give Peace A Chance” and “Cold Turkey” as the first singles for The Plastic Ono Band, his new project at the time.

The legacy of The Beatles, both group and individual, is immense and there is no doubt that the Liverpool quartet has been one of the bands that have most influenced other artists throughout history.

Far from being limited only to the music environment, one of the people who was most marked by John Lennon’s solo career is the master of horror writing, Stephen King, who used one of the singer’s songs as inspiration for his most famous works: The Shining.

Obviously, the horror classic does not go hand in hand with the positive message of love and unity that arose from the solo work of the “Imagine” interpreter, but somehow it accommodated the novelist to give the legendary novel. The title The Shining was supposedly taken almost directly from one of the former Fab Four’s tracks.

On his hit, “Instant Karma”, John sings the famous phrase “We all shine on!!”, Which is not related to the horror genre in any way, but it is rumored that listening to it while writing the book, King almost instantly he knew that he had found the title of his work.

The Maine-born writer was quickly conquered by that line and changed the name of the title from The Shiner (a word that was also discarded for being used as a racial slur against African Americans) to the well-known The Shining.

King is famous for giving small amounts of information in his books for his most attentive readers to find, but in his acclaimed book, he made no reference to Lennon or his song “Instant Karma,” which surprises some people. However, all of this was rectified in the book’s sequel, The Shining: Doctor Sleep, when the writer confirmed Lennon’s influence.