Updated: Jul 14
Photo Credit to ringostarr.com Article by Emma Saletta
On July 7, Ringo Starr celebrated his 80th birthday by throwing an online YouTube concert! Famous performers who were part of the celebration include Dave Grohl, Sheryl Crow, Joe Walsh, and fellow Beatle Paul McCartney. This concert was able to bring together artists of older and newer generations to celebrate the birthday of the legendary drummer, while promoting various charities as well. Even though Ringo Starr has had public birthday celebrations for over ten years, this is the first one he’s ever done through webcast. With that in mind, these are some highlights of the YouTube broadcast:
Sheila E. Modernizes “Come Together”: Because of COVID-19, half of the performances were pre-recorded in the musician’s homes. This was the case for Sheila E, and she did not disappoint! Unlike most covers, the opening drumming was done with bongo drums, adding extra uniqueness to the song. Ringo Starr also lent some of his drumming skills, helping the song continue with its liveliness. She also chose to stick to the songs original key for the performance, which increased the fierceness she gave throughout the entire performance!
Friends and Family Gave Peace and Love: A lot of birthday parties will show video messages from friends and family who could not say happy birthday in person. Since it is a webcast, it should come as no surprise that Ringo Starr was flooded with birthday messages from his wife, children, grandchildren, and friends. Friends who left messages include Nils Lofgren, Jaden Smith, and Ron Howard!
One Guy Didn’t Read the Invite: According to Ringo, one guy never reads the invite. This year, that one guy was Eagles guitarist Joe Walsh! According to Walsh, he stopped by to “make sure he doesn’t get to tired doing this by himself.” After the elbow bump and introduction, Walsh goes on to play a cover of the 1963 Beatles hit “Boys”, which I assume makes up for not reading the invite correctly!
Sheryl Crow and Her Many Instruments: It should come as no surprise that the hit song “All You Need is Love” would be performed by an artist or two. Sheryl Crow decided to put her own spin to the song, as well apply more than five different instruments she plays herself! Although a lot of people already know that she is an amazing singer and performer, it is likely that no one knew she could also play the cello, drums, and accordion.
The Lotus Foundation: Another thing that Ringo Starr is famous for is his philanthropy. The Lotus foundation was founded by him and his wife with the intention of funding, supporting, participating in, and promoting charitable projects aimed at advancing social welfare in diverse areas. For his Big Birthday Show, he asked for donations to the foundation throughout the broadcast, with the money raised being donated to Black Lives Matter Global Network, The David Lynch Foundation, MusiCares & WaterAid. Not only did he mention the names and links to each organization, he also showed separate previews for each charity, supported by photos and videos describing their purpose and worldwide contributions.
He Still Gets a Little Help from His Friends: After the breakup of The Beatles, Ringo Starr continued on with his music career, eventually forming the band Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band. Becoming a popular live super group, he showed a 2019 performance of “With a Little Help From My Friends” and “Give Peace a Chance”, featuring artists such as Joe Walsh, Greg Rolie, and Colin Hay.
Last but Not Least, He Got Paul!: No other performer could conclude a birthday show other than fellow Beatle, Paul McCartney. Even though they could not record anything together from their homes, Starr still played a video from a concert in which he and McCartney played their 1968 hit “Helter Skelter”.
For those of you who wish to see the entire show, the video is right below! Peace & Love always.