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39 Responses to “IN THE STUDIO 1980:”

  1. JD says:

    These are truly wonderful (and heartbreaking) photos of John back in the studio creating music again. Thanks for these.

  2. Ishie says:

    They are magic!

  3. EmSee says:

    Lovely shots
    i like the bed in front of the mixing desk!!

  4. Bo says:


    Thanks for a fantastic site.
    The Lennon studio pictures, are some pics from a video?
    Any news about the double fantasy video session, august 18 1980?

    Bosse, Sweden

  5. kavada says:

    I really love these photos, and I have seen some of them in books before! Where is the photos with Yoko in bed?

  6. Mike says:

    Thanks for putting these up; these pics finally helped me figure out where Double Fantasy was recorded… few people relaize that there were 3 or 4 Hit Factory recording studios in NYC during the 70s-80s. Thanks to these pics I now know that the DF studio was the one at 353 West 48th Street (Sear Sound now). Take a look at the Studio A pics on their website ( ) if you want to see what the studio looks like nowdays – it’s all there, the parquee wooden floors, the wooden slat walls etc… then compare with the pics of John in the studio and at the console.

    Thanks again, as always!!!

  7. Does anyone know what the style of sunglasses John is wearing?
    I have loved that look for a long time.

  8. Dave says:

    Thanks very much for posting these, there’s a good few images in there I hadn’t seen before.

    Some of them look like video screencaps, or am I just imagining this?

  9. Raul says:

    I agree with Dave, the pictures look like video screencaps, that’s what I thought. Thanks for share, first time that i see some of those pictures!

  10. julio serra says:

    So good to see John back in the studio again. He looked slim and very handsome.

  11. Brian says:

    Lovely stuff.
    Wearing sunglasses indoors—I know it looks ‘cool’, but why? Studios aren’t bright places.

  12. Lou says:

    Slim? He looks anorexic. That is not healthy man there.

    And according to interviews I’ve read from Jack Douglas, the producer, Yoko couldn’t stand to have John around when she was doing her songs. She didn’t want John in the studio. So these shots of them together in the studio are a whole lot of PR.

  13. Jennifer says:

    Thank you very much for sharing all these beautiful pictures. : )

  14. Tammy says:

    Or Lou, at the time Jack and Yoko were in dispute and Jack ‘may’ have downplayed Yoko’s role, the session tapes certainly show Yoko front and centre while John was in the studio, they make for a very revealing listen and show John and Yoko occasionally bickering, John definately NOT being ruled or pushed around by Yoko, and also very tender moments which put paid to all rumours they were splitting up (which i’ve always felt to be complete BS)

  15. Tammy says:

    Screen caps of still photo’s

  16. Tammy says:

    Hi, yes if anyone has any info on John’s glasses that he wore during this time, please let us all know, i love them and still think they look beyond cool, somewhere i have a pic of James Dean wearing an almost identical pair.

  17. Tammy says:

    Hi Mike, you may want to look at this earlier post by me on finding the 1980 Hit Factory location, you are correct it was located at 353 West 48th st ..

    I can see that up to at least 2008 it was still being used as a studio by Sear Sound, while i was there in 2005 i was told it was being converted into apartments, i’m curious if that happened or not.

  18. Chris says:

    I want to get those glasses too! I love them!

  19. Mike says:

    Thanks for the link Tammy; I didn’t find your website till 2008, so I had no idea. I’ve stayed at the Belvedere several times and I distinctly remember 353 from my last walk around that area… I’m pretty sure the studio was on the 6th floor which would jive with Jack Douglas’ comment about telling John goodnight as he got on the elevator the night of the 8th.

    I know Mr. Sear died earlier this year, so I’m not sure about what might be there now… next time I head to NYC I’ll see if I can figure it out. Thanks for everrything you do on this site; it is much appreciated.

  20. Chris says:

    The Record Plant no longer exists. They turned the building into condominium. It’s now called The Record Plan Condominium.

  21. Ishie says:

    If I recall correctly John’s glasses were made by the Japanese manufacturer ‘Hakusan’. I think the style was called ‘Mayfair’ but I can’t be sure of that. The website is I don’t know if they are sold in the U.S. but it’s worth looking into. Good Luck!

  22. Greg R says:

    I did a quick search and this page came up talking about the sunglasses being Ray Bans (model RB4141):

    Doing a Google image search for RB4141, it looks pretty accurate:

    Pretty cool shades! Pretty pricey though too. They’re listed around $129 US.

    As always, incredible collection of photos, Miss Tammy! Thanks for sharing so many gems.

  23. Tammy says:

    Chris, i think you mean the Hit Factory don’t you?

  24. James says:

    These really looked like they were stills from a movie. There has been talk for a long time that some of the sessions were filmed. I really would love it if Yoko would release the footage (if she has it)

  25. Ray Ban RB 4141 Sunglasses Honey – looks like the closes match to the John 1980 style – Persol has somethings close… Ray Ban went out of their way to recreate the 1980 Lennon sun glasses
    You can find around $100 or less great deals on theis make from Ray Ban

  26. Rev. John C. Link says:

    Greetings & Blessings! The glasses that Lennon wore in 1980 are indeed the Hakusan “Mayfair” model. Lennon owned three different colored frames (clear, caramel-yellow, and honey-orange) & each style frame was fitted with three different colored lenses (1- dark sunglass 2- blue tint 3-??unknown- either clear or different sunglass shade or color changing ones??)…so he had 9 pairs of them in total.
    Yoko commissioned Eagle Eyewear to produce licensed designer quality frames called “The John Lennon Collection” years ago- they were Italian made. Sadly they’ve not been reproduced since then.
    Over the years I’ve found 5 pairs of the “Double Fantasy” model, which is fashioned after the Hakusan “Mayfair”- I’ve got 2 pair of black (my least fave- one pair are prescription lenses, the other normal sunglasses), 2 tortoise shell (yellow-caramel swirled with maroon- both outfitted with prescription sunglass), & 1 pair of honey-orange (my favorite- waiting for the next trip to the eye doctor & then they will get prescription sunglass lenses).
    I’ve just written to- to request that they start to make these again…even offering mine as potential template models to use…though I hope they’ll go the extra yard & get the exact pair from Hakusan (since I provided them with that information)
    Here’s the fledgling company that I hope is large & ambitious enough to take up this idea…

    Here are two interesting links that helped lead me to find this info out, but the original credit has to go to a person who posts at The Steve Hoffman Forums as “monkboughtlunch”…I’ve included the page where he provided the original info, but the thread itself, which concerns the mystery of the lost video/film of John performing “I’m Losing You” & possibly “(Just Like” Starting Over” that were filmed on August 18 & 19, 1980…it appears that it may reside in the hands of a private collector and have been stolen from the estate after his death (Lennon had claimed that he destroyed it- though Yoko still has possession of a different reel of her doing “I’m Moving On” from the same sessions)
    Here are the links where I found the most information outside of the Hoffman Forum. The second really details the whole shebang.
    United States
    “Aug 10, 2010
    ghe454 wrote:
    What is the name/brand of the glasses john lennon wore in 1980?
    Example here:

    They are a brand called Hakusan in japan john found the brand at a store named milk boy he fell In love with the brand and bought several pairs he’s mainly seen in his clear yellow mayfairs
    . The brand in Hakusan the style is Mayfair , they are sold in japan for a little under 400 U.S they are also hand made.”

    And here-

    “Throughout Hakusan Megane’s history, notable celebrities around the world have supported the brand due to Hakusan’s quiet quality.

    In the summer of 1979, Beatles member John Lennon visited Japan with his wife, Yoko Ono. Lennon and Ono browsed MILKBOY, a pioneer store in the 1970s Japanese punk scene.

    Lennon discovered Hakusan in the store and took a personal liking to Hakusan’s eyewear.

    Soon after, Hakusan Masachika was introduced to John Lennon through MILKBOY’s owner. Hakusan then became John Lennon’s main eyewear supplier, bringing their wide variety of glasses to Lennon’s suites whenever he was in town.

    Hakusan Masachika and John Lennon got along well due to their common interest in glasses. After a series of selection, John Lennon chose “Mayfair” celluloid handmade glasses and he bought all colors that are clear, caramel and tortoiseshell. On Hakusan’s part, the store also customised three different color lenses for the three frames.

    Since then, John Lennon is often seen wearing “Mayfair” in all major occasions. On December 8, 1980 in The Dakota, New York, John Lennon was also wearing “Mayfair” when he was shot.

    Currently, new releases from Hakusan Megane are always covered in depth by major newspapers, magazines and media in Japan. Due to limited production, it is common for the Japanese to queue up to buy their glasses.”
    And here’s the Hakusan website (sadly in Japanese)
    Blessings Of Love & Light!!

  27. cacau says:

    John had a big noise!

  28. cacau says:

    Sorry: a big nose!

  29. Diamond70 says:

    Rev. John C. I will gladly reproduce the Hakusan “Mayfair” honey-orange, it would be an honour. Please contact me so that we can discuss it more. You can see my current “Mayfair” reproductions here:

    Just go to the contact page grab my email address and drop me a line. :)

  30. Diamond70 says:

    Can I get an AMEN!?

  31. Rev. John C. Link says:


  32. Diamond70 says:

    AMEN REV!!!! :-)

  33. greg raymond says:

    Recently purchased an EXACT replica pair of the John 1980 sunglasses from a website called ROCK FRAMES for around 200 American dollars. I am sooooo gladI did!!! These are eaxacly like John’s unfortunately they only come in honey-orange (would’ve liked clear)Check it out.

  34. Tammy says:

    Hi, so what’s the url for the frames?.

  35. greg raymond says:

    Hello all my Beatle friends!!!!! Recently bought (and had made into prescription) the John Lennon Mayfair frames with the clear plastic frame with(are you ready for this) blue lenses they are fantastic and EXACTLY like John’s from 1980. Please check ’em out on the ROCK FRAMES web site. I have these and my HONEY-ORANGE pair both with prescription lenses and I couldn’t be any happier!!! These are a real find for the hardcore Lennon fan.

  36. greg raymond says:

    If you have trouble finding the glasses by using the name ROCK FRAMES try using RETROVISION JOHN LENNON MAYFAIR and that should get you the glasses website.

  37. Tammy says:

    Hi, i’ve seen the site, they should send me a pair of orange ones as freebies for all the traffic i’ve swung their way :-) i REALLY want the orange pair, but i have such a large boof head, i’m not sure they’d fit, and i guess they don’t do different sizes.

  38. greg raymond says:

    You’re gonna love “em!!!!!! I’ll keep coming back to this and expect an update when you’ve got ’em. I’m so excited for you!!!! As I said I now own the honey-orange and the clear they’re great!!!! just like John’s!!!

  39. greg raymond says:

    P.S. The size should be just fine they’re really great!!!

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