HARI ON FIRE — John Lennon’s battle with then-U.S. President Richard Nixon is well-documented – but a recently-discovered telegram revealed that fellow Beatle George Harrison also had an angry exchange with the shamed leader’s administration.
Author Chip Madinger discovered the paperwork while researching the 2015 book Lennonology: Strange Days Indeed. He used a Freedom of information request to view Lennon’s file held by the Immigration and Naturalization Service after his long fight to be allowed to settle in the U.S. in the early 70’s. Madinger also requested Harrison’s file.
“George came to the States in March of ’73 for the Apple meetings and to work on the Ringo [Starr] album,” he told Billboard in a new interview. “He came in from Pakistan and was detained at the airport. And they went through some ‘he said and she said’ but George was eventually was allowed to come into the States. And I believe he was given permission to stay until June 1 and he was looking for more time.”
The INS allowed him to remain until June 30, but refused further requests to stay beyond that date. Harrison and wife Pattie left the U.S. around June 28. “And he must have just gotten a bee in his bonnet or something about it and wrote this telegram,” Madinger said.
The spelling errors in the message suggest that it was dictated. It was addressed to Nixon in the White House and read: “Sir, how can you bomb Cambodian citizens and worry about kicking me out of the country for smoking marijuana at the [same] time. Your repressive emperaour war monger ways stop before too piece luv. We will run the world Harry Krisher, Hare Hara Krishne Hare Hara Hare Hara Krishner. George Harrison.”
The INS file also included a response from foreign service officer James Greene, who told Harrison: “I am informed that in denying your application for an extension of stay in May 1973 the district director of our service office in Los Angeles advised you of the reasons for this denial.” A note on the file said Harrison had been “concerned about being denied a visa extension for a marihuana conviction in England.”
SHORT TAKES — 70’s icon Robin Trower played The Paramount in Huntington over the weekend. According to our spy Barry Fisch, “Quite good! The man hasn’t lost a thing. He’s still Robin Trower.” He has a new album out, Coming Closer To The Day, that we’ll have a review on shortly. His 1974 classic Bridge Of Sighs is still a monster. Thanks to Barry for the accompanying pic … As Micky Dolenz preps for a series of solo shows and a Mike &Micky tour of Australia and New Zealand in June, he visited the set of CBS’ The Big Bang Theory last week and sat in Sheldon’s chair for a photo. As any follower of the show knows, sitting in Sheldon’s chair is a no-no. Interestingly, last week’s BBT show was the funniest in two years. Great show and will miss it … April 26 at Steve Walter’s Cutting Room will host a special media event for The Hit Men. Q1043’s Jonathan Clarke will emcee the event. Details to follow … That book on The View, Ladies Who Punch, sure has generated substantial ink; from Elizabeth Hasselbeck to Rosie O’Donnell and Whoopi. Honestly. Who cares … all the reveals are so embarrassing. I’m still surprised the show is still on … Say what you will about Kathie Lee Gifford, but her last show with Hoda Kotb on Friday was somewhat blissful. Giving every audience member a Carnival Cruise was an inspired move too. Regis’ taped message was heartfelt too. He looked somewhat frail and as Reege-fan, I hope all is OK. What other AM-host can you name that has had two bona-fide-successes? I know Kathie Lee and have been there for the ups-and-downs. Notice she didn’t thank Gelman … who was a constant thorn in her side back in the day. She’s a straight-shooter for sure; always has been. Good luck to her! … Author Mark Bego is interviewed by radio’s Frank MacKay Monday for his new book Living the Luxe Life, on Efrem Harkam.
NAMES IN THE NEWS — Stuart Shabman; Mark C. Alpert; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Randy Alexander; Steve Walter; Susan Hathaway; Table 87; William Schill; Wendy Stuart Kaplan; Brad Balfour; Julia Machover; and, CFS.