I was doing it as a way to connect with my father—trying to fill the void he left when he disappeared.The more I played music, the more I felt I had a piece of him inside me.”Although Sean spent his childhood making music with his mother, his aversion to notoriety intensified when he released his own album at 22.While both showcased the heights he can achieve on his own, what most defines the oeuvre of Lennon is the infinite scope of musicians and artists he has recorded alongside these last 20 years, a list that includes such names as Lenny Kravitz, John Zorn, Soulfly, John Medeski, Walter Sear, Greg Saunier of Deerhoof, Black Lips, Fat White Family and Mark Ronson among many others.Since 2008, meanwhile, his current project The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger evolved from an intimate project between Lennon and his girlfriend, American model Charlotte Kemp-Muhl, into a fully formed rock band that has helped take Lennon’s love for early Pink Floyd, electric Miles Davis and The Beach Boys’ LSD days into the stratosphere of the couple’s shared imagination.Sean Lennon was 5 years old when he first entered the studio to recount a story his father John used to read to him for the intro of “Even When You’re Far Away” off his mother Yoko Ono’s controversial 1981 album In 1996, young Lennon would emerge from under Yoko’s wing a full-fledged musician, becoming a touring (and shortly thereafter full-time) member of the celebrated art-pop outfit Cibo Matto and recording with the downtown Manhattan supergroup Butter 08, comprised of Cibo’s Miho Hatori and Yuka Honda, Russell Simins of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, former Skeleton Key/Enon percussionist Rick Lee and film director Mike Mills ( in 1998.But more importantly, it was the realization of a truly gifted and talented young artist utilizing the lessons he learned from working alongside his famous mom in the studio to forge his own path with a primary emphasis on collaboration.
If Pussy Galore was a garage band with a noticeable blues lean, the Blues Explosion collided punk, noise, garage, blues, and rockabilly together in such a way that it was hard to recognize the individual parts.
They really misunderstood me, and I got cold feet, so I retreated and became a professional sideman instead of pursuing a solo career.” the first album by the Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, Sean’s two-person band with Charlotte Kemp Muhl, a 23-year-old model with luminous porcelain skin and such pillowy lips she could be the offspring of Mick Jagger and Angelina Jolie.
In a collaboration so enmeshed it recalls the epic mind meld of John and Yoko, Charlotte is Sean’s girlfriend, writing partner, and fellow musician, singing intricate harmonies and playing everything from accordion and glockenspiel to acoustic bass, banjo, piano, cello, vibraphone, recorder, melodica, and shakers on the album.
In the November 2010 issue, Leslie Bennetts interviewed Sean Lennon and his “sugar mama,””model-musician Charlotte Kemp Muhl, ahead of their new album’s release—together, they make up musical duo the Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger. Other performers crave recognition, but the son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono just wanted to avoid it.
“Fame is what I was born with, and it was a nightmare being a child,” says Sean Lennon, who was five years old when his father was gunned down in front of their Manhattan apartment building, the Dakota, in 1980.