“Nobody Told Me” is a song by John Lennon. The B-side features Yoko Ono‘s “O’ Sanity”; both are on the Milk and Honey album. The promo video for the single was made up of clips of footage from Lennon’s other videos, as are most posthumous Lennon videos.
The lyrics reference the yellow idol in J. Milton Hayes’ poem, The Green Eye of the Yellow God. Another line in the song is “There’s UFO’s over New York and I ain’t too surprised”. In the liner notes to his 1974 album Walls and Bridges he said, “On the 23rd August 1974 at 9 o’clock I saw a U.F.O. – J.L.”. The line “Nobody told me there’d be days like these…strange days indeed…most peculiar, mama” is in contrast to the old adage “My mother told me there’d be days like this.”
Recorded but left incomplete shortly before his death in 1980, the song was later completed by Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono in 1983 and released as the first single from Lennon and Ono’s album Milk and Honey in 1984. The song was later released in the UK in 1990, b/w “I’m Stepping Out”. The song was originally written for Ringo Starr to include on his 1981 album, Stop and Smell the Roses, but due to Lennon’s death, Starr decided not to record it.
- John Lennon – vocals, rhythm guitar
- Earl Slick, Hugh McCracken – lead guitar
- Tony Levin – bass
- George Small – keyboards
- Andy Newmark – drums
- Arthur Jenkins – percussion
“Nobody Told Me” was Lennon’s last new single to reach the UK Top 10, peaking at number 6 (although a reissue of “Imagine” reached number 3 in December 1999). The single was also Lennon’s last US Top 10 hit, peaking at number 5 on the Billboard Hot 100, number 6 on the Cashbox Top 100 and was his third single to enter the US Top 10 posthumously.