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John Lennon: Celebs on the Legend

Saturday, October 9 would have been the 70th birthday of music legend John Lennon.

"Extra" has complied a list of quotes from celebs inspired by the late Beatle and peace activist, who was assassinated by a crazed fan almost 30 years ago.

Frank Sinatra once said, "Lennon was a most talented man and above all, a gentle soul. John and his colleagues set a high standard by which contemporary music continues to be measured."

See what other stars have said about John Lennon...

John Lennon: Celebs on the Legend

Steven Tyler

"I never got to meet John, but I always felt like I knew him anyway. The Beatles taught us to fly, and John taught us to freefall back to earth. All songwriters ever want to do is crawl inside other people's souls and psyches, and somehow change everything. Jesus, what part of John or the Beatles did not get inside every one of us? If it wasn't for John Lennon, we wouldn't be here."

Wyclef Jean

"Lennon was just a great songwriter. The simplicity with which he wrote songs ... it's something even a child can understand. But it's not easy to write a simple song. And every one of Lennon's songs had a dope hook. He wrote about what was going on, and he always encouraged world peace. Like Bob Marley and even Sting, he transcended his border to make a difference. He came to New York and sang about the Vietnam war. Although he never saw world peace, I think he changed a lot of people's minds."

Ozzy Osbourne

"The Beatles were the reason why I wanted to get going. I wanted to be a Beatle. I often daydream about whether they would ever have reformed. I never saw The Beatles, I saw Paul McCartney play but never saw The Beatles -- I would have loved to have seen them play. The world stopped for me when Sharon told me John Lennon had been shot in New York. I can't even describe how I felt. If he was a politician, a soldier, anything else, it would be, 'Oh yeah, well he is in that kind of business,' but the amount of joy and hope that he gave people was just remarkable."

Drew Barrymore

"Anything in life, whatever your question is for the universe, if you put on a John Lennon song, he will answer you. I think 'Watching the Wheels' is the song I love the most, because it is so true. I completely feel like that song. I feel like sometimes he's saying that the people he's talking about are himself-himself looking at himself. And just how perfect a song it is for how we feel inside our own minds. We're trying to go on these paths that feel right and good to us, but we're always questioning how it's affecting others along the way. He gave everyone great music to be sad to and make love to and laugh to and drive to, and every sort of thing that you live for in the world. If you put his music on to anything that you're doing in life, it fits right alongside of it."

Paul McCartney

"I definitely did look up to John. We all looked up to John. He was older and he was very much the leader; he was the quickest wit and the smartest and all that kind of thing."

John Hughes

"My heroes were Dylan, John Lennon and Picasso, because they each moved their particular medium forward, and when they got to the point where they were comfortable, they always moved on."

Sheryl Crow

"In the band that most influenced music and, moreover, culture, John represented the rock 'n' roll attitude of rebellion, dissatisfaction and social consciousness — the idea that we as people can expand our minds, grow, live together and love in peace. He tried to incorporate those ideals in his music and his life. His influence is everywhere — in every rock 'n' roll singer-songwriter."

Keith Richards

"There were the Beatles, and there was John. As a band, they were a great unit. But John, he was his own man ... He's rubbed off on me as much as anybody. A bit of me rubbed off on John, too, you know. He took it with him. My father just passed away, and he winked at me just before he died. I really feel a lot better about death now. I'm getting off on that wink. I'd give the wink to John."

Robert Palmer

"Without McCartney the Beatles wouldn't have been half as popular, and without Lennon they wouldn't have been half as important."

Mick Fleetwood

"John's body of work has left such a major impact on us all for all time. Just the sense of what he stood for and his wish list was the best you can get. Which was something he put his body and soul into. An incredible songwriter, an incredibly probably complicated person, but he had a very simple message. Which I think, without being presumptuous, would I'm sure have been his choice would in terms of if you have to leave a legacy, was his work in the peace movement, free expression and just putting everyone on a level playing field. John was a fantastic human being. I was blessed with not having a close friendship necessarily, but when I was 18 or 19, I got to hang out around the Beatles and John. It was an incredible experience, the energy that they all had was phenomenal, just outrageous, and of course, he's still a bright and shining star for us all."

Tom Petty

"To me, John's legacy is honesty. When I was young and seeing the Beatles performing on TV, they were the first ones who weren't just saying pat, showbiz banter. They'd actually say something. He was a great role model for my whole generation, because you knew when John suffered and you knew when John was happy, but it all somehow came out OK."

Martin Lewis

"Poets and playwrights wrote of insecurity. Pop singers may have felt it. But they certainly didn't sing about it to their fans. Lennon did. 'Every now and then I feel so insecure...' he sang in 'Help!' He also admitted to jealousy, suicidal depression and heroin addiction. His gut decision to turn his life into art set Lennon apart from McCartney in terms of style. Indeed it set Lennon high above the others in his own tree. There were many who joined Lennon or who followed Lennon into the new world of singer/songwriter-dom. But few matched his poetry or honesty. For Lennon, confessional songwriting was much more than just the prominent use of the first-person pronoun-which seemed to be the norm in the self-obsessed 70's."

Shirley Manson

"Nobody has been able to encompass his humanity, his humility and his humor, his wit and his intelligence quite the same way he has done-like the perfect rock star."

Henry Winkler

"The fact is he was a major important communicator for an entire human generation. It is so unbelievably sad that he was taken from us. He must have been an old soul because that whole group was just stunning when they were together. Their journey through figuring out who they were, how to live on the planet, what was important. It was just fabulous."

Bob Dylan

"John and the Beatles were doing things nobody was doing. Their chords were outrageous, and their harmonies made it all valid. Everybody else thought they were for the teeny-boppers, that they were gonna pass right away. But it was obvious to me that they had staying power. I knew they were pointing in the direction where music had to go."

Tim Robbins

"Brilliant poetry, great rage, rock 'n' roll and a real strong voice. I think he's introduced us into a lot of humor in song writing. One of the joys of my childhood was listening to those totally absurd and ridiculous and surreal songs. It introduced a real sense of humor in my mind."

Graham Nash

"John's legacy is that he gave as much dignity to the common man as he could. He stood for dignity and respect and songs that had a reason for being."

David Crosby

"For me, John Lennon's legacy is his songs-all those brilliant, beautiful, incredible pieces of work. John was a very fierce guy-he wasn't a shy little human being. He was a guy with strong opinions, and he had no problem expressing them."

Esai Morales

"I like the Beatles. They're at the core of my musicality. And John Lennon's my spiritual father."

Frank Sinatra

"Lennon was a most talented man and above all, a gentle soul. John and his colleagues set a high standard by which contemporary music continues to be measured."