‘Lennon, The Mobster & The Lawyer’ Tells An Untold Story

While John Lennon retreated into private life in 1975, he was also fighting a major legal battle that flew under the public radar.

The notorious Mafia-connected owner of Roulette Records, Morris Levy, released Roots, an unauthorized version of a rock ’n’ roll oldies album John had been producing. Levy claimed the former Beatle had verbally agreed to market Roots via TV. Capital Records’ quick release of John Lennon Rock ’n’ Roll, the official album, resulted in two Levy lawsuits against John—and John’s counterclaims against Levy.

“Bergen stresses that Morris Levy was an intimidating and violent character, and an associate of the feared Vincent ‘The Chin’ Gigante of the Geneovese Mafia crime family.”

Attorney Jay Bergen, a partner in a prestigious New York City law firm, represented John in this epic battle over the rights to his own recordings. Millions of dollars were at stake.

Bergen tells the intimate story of how he worked closely with John to rebut Levy’s specious claims. He also recounts how John explained his recording process in poetic, exacting terms for a judge who knew little about The Beatles and John’s solo career.

In his own words, John’s testimony reveals remarkable insights into the creative process of an acknowledged genius of rock music. Responding to questions from Bergen and from the judge, John covers a wide range of artistic subjects from songwriting methodology to his role in mixing and recording tracks in the studio.

Slated for publication May 1, Lennon, the Mobster & the Lawyer – The Untold Story captures the high drama of the courtroom skirmishes. It also paints a detailed personal picture of John and his world in 1975–76, when he was soon to have a new son and went into happy seclusion to be a father and husband.