Beatles John Lennon 1964 Hull interview to be auctioned in Scarborough

  • Published
John Lennon (middle) interviewed by students in 1964Image source, David Duggleby Auctioneers
Image caption,
Mr Hill (right, next to John Lennon) was tasked with writing a report for the art college magazine in 1964

A never-broadcast interview with John Lennon, recorded by a Hull art student in 1964, is to be auctioned.

On the tape, Lennon tells 18-year-old John Hill he does not think The Beatles are "very good musicians" and admitted he got a friend to sit his art exam because the group were touring.

Mr Hill, who was studying at Hull Art College, recorded the reel-to-reel interview before a Beatles gig.

He found the tape in 2014 after it spent 50 years in a drawer.

Graham Paddison, of David Duggleby Auctioneers in Scarborough who are selling the lot, said that Mr Hill "bluffed" his way into the room where the Beatles were talking to the press.

"I was the youngest person in the room and the only one with a microphone," Mr Hill later recalled.

Image source, David Duggleby's Auctioneers
Image caption,
John Hill borrowed the Fi Cord recorder from a friend for the interview

"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."

The eight-and-a-half minute interview, which has never been broadcast, will be auctioned along with the recording machine, photographs and student magazine articles.

"One of the most striking things is just how relaxed the two of them were together, just two art college students chatting," the auctioneer said.

"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."

When asked if The Beatles regarded themselves primarily as musicians or entertainers, Lennon mused, "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."

Mr Hill who later worked as a schoolteacher and Leeds University lecturer, found the recording during a clear-out and sold it to the current owner, a collector of Hull antiquities and memorabilia.

The lot is due to be auctioned at David Duggleby's on Vine Street in Scarborough on Friday.

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