One Track Mind: Julian Lennon with Steven Tyler, “Someday” (2013)

If his last album seemed to be about coming to terms with John Lennon, both the good and bad of their often estranged relationship, Julian Lennon’s new single “Someday” is about rushing toward that shared legacy — and pulling it in close.

This is a mature, fully integrated effort that takes in both the obvious influences that DNA hath wrought, and everything that Lennon has slowly built into his own songwriting craft in the interim — from his tandem opening reading with Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler of a line from the Beatles’ “Baby You’re a Rich Man,” set amidst swooning strings, to his gimlet-eyed philosophizing about community in this unmannered age: “It’s not about right or wrong,” Lennon sings, “or how far down the road we’ve gone: It’s just about holding on.”

Lennon, as his father did before him, is advocating that we pull together, that we love each other as one — even as he qualifies all of it with the song title’s one-word, brutally realistic retort: “Someday.”

Lennon, who turned 50 today, then begins a billowing exploration of the lyric, as Tyler’s vocal intertwines with his own, sending what was once a lithe, though very Beatle-esque pop confection into a stratospheric, even more Beatle-esque psychedelia. Yet it never sounds taped together, never sounds like the cunning pastiche perhaps indicated in that description. Because at its center now stands a singer-songwriter who’s found his own voice, and his own peace with everything that came before.

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Nick DeRiso

Over a 30-year career, Nick DeRiso has also explored music for USA Today, All About Jazz, Ultimate Classic Rock and a host of others. Honored as columnist of the year five times by the Associated Press, Louisiana Press Association and Louisiana Sports Writers Association, he oversaw a daily section named Top 10 in the nation by the AP before co-founding Something Else! Contact him at nderiso@somethingelsereviews.com.