16 Hit Songs We *Totally* Misunderstood When We First Heard Them

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“Imagine,” John Lennon

Misunderstood Hit Songs

Apple Records

Rolling Stone called John Lennon’s anthem for peace the third greatest song of all time. Jimmy Carter equated it to national anthems, and over two-hundred mainstream artists have covered John’s solo hit in the forty years since its release. There may never be a song as ubiquitous as “Imagine,” but most people don’t realize that John meant it to be a clear endorsement of Communism. John referred to “Imagine” as “virtually the Communist Manifesto,” explaining on the record that he realized the message would be accepted if it was sugarcoated.

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