IMAGINE for a moment this moment. John Lennon making a cup of tea in the family home of his fellow Beatle Paul McCartney in 20 Forthlin Road, Liverpool. It’s March 23, 1963, the day after the band’s debut album Please Please Me was released. It’s only a couple of weeks more or less before Lennon’s son Julian will be born. Lennon’s world hasn’t changed just yet. But it’s about to. And more than he could ever know.

Dezo Hoffmann’s rather sweet domestic photograph is just one of many to be found in a new book, JOHN & YOKO/PLASTIC ONO BAND, published to mark the 50th anniversary of Lennon’s debut solo album. The story is told through Lennon’s own words along with those of Yoko, fellow Beatles Ringo and George, Eric Clapton and many more.

Lennon would have been 80 earlier this month. It will be 40 years since he was murdered in December. All these anniversaries, all these memories. Here he is when everything, good and bad, is still ahead of him.