John Lennon was one of the Beatles an immensely popular rock band from the United Kingdom which was one of the first popular bands in the genre and which was also one of the first examples of the kind of celebrity which modern Media can create.
After the breakup of the Beatles in 1969, Lennon became increasingly politically active. He and his wife, conceptual artist Yoko Ono, moved to New York City, joined the movement against the Vietnam War, and used their celebrity in a series of unusual publicity stunts aimed at promoting peace, including a "bed-in" for peace, and the publication of newspaper ads and outdoor billboards with the slogan "WAR IS OVER! If you want it."
Lennon (both with and without Ono) also used his music to promote various left-wing causes, in songs such as "Woman is the Nigger of the World," "Give Peace a Chance," and "Imagine." The last-named tune has become a popular anthem for generalized idealism, despite the implied attacks it contains against organized religion, capitalism, and nationalism.
Lennon's left-wing sympathies won him detractors as well as supporters. He was investigated by the FBI and many efforts were made to deport him, sometimes using a past conviction on marijuana possession as a pretext. After lengthy court battles, Lennon finally won the right to remain in the US. He continued to live and work in New York City until 1981, when he was shot and killed by a deranged fan outside the Dakota apartment building on the city's upper west side.