John Lydon

John Lydon


1/31/1956, Finsbury, London, England, U.K.

Birth Name

John Joseph Lydon



Also Known As

Johnny Rotten, Johnny Lydon
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Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • John's first record contract was with Virgin Records.

    • John contracted a serious bout of meningitis when he was seven years old. He was in and out of coma's for almost a year. The meningitis wiped most of his memory and is also the cause of his infamous stare.

    • Sex Pistols guitarist, Steve Jones, gave Lydon the name 'Johnny Rotten' when John had joined the Sex Pistols, because his teeth were green.

    • John has lived in California for years, but is still a British citizen.

    • John's whole "Johnny Rotten" persona was indicated as a stage act in The Filth & the Fury (2000), the considerably more flattering of two documentaries on the Sex Pistols. John Lydon was said to be a sickly, quiet, bookish type before he joined the group and the documentary showed that many aspects of his stage persona were inspired directly by Laurence Olivier's performance in the film Richard III (1955): the hunched back, the half-sneer/half-grin, the loud clothes, the tendency to shout insults at any "passersby."

    • John's first band The Sex Pistols were voted the 58th Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Artists of all time by Rolling Stone.

    • John's parents are John Christopher and Eileen Lydon.

    • John suffered Spinal Meningitis as a child.

    • John has three younger brothers, Jimmy, Bobby and Martin Lydon.

    • John is happily married to Nora Forster.

    • John is also the lead singer of PiL aka Public Image Limited.

    • John is 5' 8" (1.73 m) tall.

    • John aka Johnny Rotten was the lead singer of the legendary punk rock band The Sex Pistols.

    • John was named 87th Greatest Briton in a BBC poll.

    • John is left-handed, but has had to play guitar right-handed after he was knifed by pro-Royalists upset over the Sex Pistols song "God Save The Queen."

  • Quotes

    • (on wanting to write a song for Britney Spears)
      John: She has been hurt. And hurt is the root core essence of good music. I haven't written a song for Britney yet but I would love to. I'd like to help out because there's a girl who needs some help.

    • John Lydon: I think national pride leads to nothing but wars and hate.

    • On being on tour with the other Sex Pistols again
      John Lydon: They don't seem to relate to the world around them. They're stuck in this 1976 vibe. It's very peculiar. It was a bit like walking around with a museum attached to you. But then, I'm perverse enough to enjoy that.

    • At the grand opening of the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas
      John Lydon: I love it! It's so quintessentially American! It's a cross between a mausoleum of pop music and a temple of greed!

    • On acting
      John Lydon: I hated it. It was too long, too stressful; two minutes' working day and 12 hours' fear and nausea. And no improvising; you're just a hired robot. That might be all right for people that don't have any kind of personality, but if you have anything going for your own self, it's very, very frustrating that way.

    • On using drugs
      John Lydon: I used to. And found that I wasn't getting too much done.

    • John: People don't like other poor people, and rather than blame the people that make you all poor, you blame each other.

    • John: Do what I want, be honest to myself and then it would do good for others, that's all, full on.

    • John: Anyone who's parading under a $100,00 plus video is not free from corporate. That's just the MTV advertising agency. I find them all to be just a bit of a sham.

    • John: I'm no one's lap dog, you can't put me on a leash.

    • John: Don't accept the old order. Get rid of it.

    • John: I think too many people tell me what I think and not enough ask me.