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Yoko Ono to receive songwriting credit for "Imagine"

Yoko Ono is finally getting the recognition she deserves for collaborating with late husband John Lennon on "Imagine" -- 40 years after the iconic song was released.

Yoko Ono: I did not break up the Beatles 00:49

The change was announced Wednesday at an annual meeting of the National Music Publishers Association in New York, where a clip of Lennon was played in which he said the song "should be credited as a Lennon-Ono song."

"A lot of it -- the lyric and concept -- came from Yoko," the clip continued. "But those days I was a bit more selfish, a bit more macho, and I sort of omitted to mention her contribution. But it was right out of 'Grapefruit,' her book. There's a whole pile of pieces about 'Imagine this' and 'Imagine that.'"

Ono was on hand at the meeting along with her son, Sean Ono Lennon, to received a song of the century award for "Imagine," though the co-writing honor was a surprise for them.

"When they officially acknowledged -- through my father's account -- that my mother co-wrote 'Imagine,' the song of the century, it may have been the happiest day of mine and [my] mother's life," Sean told Billboard magazine via text message.

Patti Smith then performed a rendition of the song, accompanied by her daughter on piano.

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