I know this might sound controversial, especially from someone who honestly enjoys the album (but not the film) Spice World, but I'm just not that crazy about the Beatles. That being said, with a catalog as massive and varied as theirs is, there are, of course, a couple of songs I love–most of which were penned by John Lennon: You've Got to Hide Your Love Away, Across The Universe, I'm So Tired, and Michelle.
As far as his solo career goes, I was just in the wrong age group to know too much about it. There was his time with the Beatles, the assassination, and Yoko and bed-ins in between, but I'd really never heard much of his solo work until recently (except for the frequently played Imagine).
This, his first “official” solo album, was recorded at the same time (and with the same staff) as the avant garde Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band–both albums covers are nearly identical, tranquil snapshots, only the couple appears in slightly different positions on each record. John and Yoko were working a lot out (both were undergoing Primal Therapy at the time) and a few songs sound purely therapeutic or a shade too political and end up not totally enjoyable like the uncomfortable My Mummy's Dead and Power to the People (which reminds me of a Coke commercial from the '80s).
I'm recommending this album not so much for the heavier, cathartic songs, but for all the really pretty ones that have been rattling around in my brain this week. Hold On (which features a playful impersonation of the Cookie Monster) Love, and Look At Me are particularly powerful and touching tunes.
Becoming more familiar with his work, his tragic death feels like a much greater loss–a loss I doubt that the new movie with Jordan Catalano and Lindsay Lohan will handle very deftly. Instead, listen to this album to recall a graceful talent taken too soon.