John Lennon (9 October 1940 - 8 December 1980) was best known as a singer, songwriter, poet and guitarist for the English music group The Beatles. His creative career also included the roles of solo musician, peace activist, artist, actor and author. As half of the legendary Lennon-McCartney songwriting team, he heavily influenced the development of rock music, leading it towards more advanced multi-layered arrangements, mature lyrical sentiments, and musical eclecticism.
He is recognised as one of the greatest music icons of the 20th century and many of his songs, such as "Imagine" and "Strawberry Fields Forever", are often ranked among the best songs in popular music history. In 2002, the BBC conducted a vote to discover the 100 Greatest Britons of all time, and the British public voted Lennon into 8th place.