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Lennon commented on the song's meaning:
"It is the concept of positive prayer ... If you can imagine a world at peace, with no denominations of religion—not without religion but without this my-God-is-bigger-than-your-God thing—then it can be true ... The World Church called me once and asked, "Can we use the lyrics to 'Imagine' and just change it to 'Imagine one religion'? That showed [me] they didn't understand it at all. It would defeat the whole purpose of the song, the whole idea."
B.B. King, Aeromsith's Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, Elvis Costello and Others Nominees For 2013 Songwriters Hall of Fame
They are joined by a who's who of the music world, including Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie, Jeff Lynne (ELO), Steve Winwood, Bobby Womack and Foreigner's Lou Gramm and Mick Jones, who said in an interview that he's excited to be highlighted as a songwriter.
"It means a lot that those songs have been recognized, and maybe, hopefully a little part of history," Jones said of the band's hits, which include "I Want to Know What Love Is" and "Waiting for a Girl Like You."
Vince Gill and Rod Temperton, who wrote Michael Jackson's "Thriller," ''Rock With You" and "Off the Wall," are also nominated.
Non-performing songwriters up for nomination include "Chain of Fools" songwriter Don Covay, country music songwriter Bobby Braddock and Holly Knight, who co-wrote Pat Benatar's "Love Is a Battlefield" and Tina Turner's "Better Be Good to Me."
Linda Perry, the writer behind Christina Aguilera's "Beautiful," is nominated along with Bob McDill, Rick Nowels, Randy Goodrum, Tony Hatch and JD Souther. Writing duos Dennis Lambert and Brian Potter, and P.F. Sloan and Steve Barri are also nominated.
Voting ends December 17 and the gala takes place June 13 in New York City at the New York Marriott Marquis.
The Songwriters Hall of Fame, established in 1969, honors artists and writes whose work represents a wide spectrum of songs. In 2010, the Songwriters Hall of Fame moved into its first "physical" space within the Los Angeles Grammy Museum.