terça-feira, 7 de julho de 2020

Ringo Starr is 80!!! Hail Ringo!!!

All Hail Ringo Starr!

A post of mine, that had a lot of repercussions on Facebook, said:
"When the Beatles broke up, 
the oldest was not 30 years old!"
The reason, for sure, was how they managed to do so much, in such a short time, and still have their works reverberated today, but the point of this post is not that one.

My first question for you is:

1. Who was the oldest of the Beatles, WHO, WHO, WHO?
Ringo Starr prepara megaevento on-line para comemorar seus 80 anos
For sure, you already know, because of the title, but I doubt that most of you would get it right, if you were offered a test.

Ringo Starr  is 80 years old as of today, July 7, 2020. 

Congrats, Ringo!!!
Peace and Love!!!
The second oldest was John, born on October 9, 1940.

The third oldest was Paul, born on June 18, 1942.

The youngest was George, born on February 25, 1943.

Ringo will celebrate its 80th birthday with an online event.

Watch out, TODAY

2. Who is the last one to join The Beatles, WHO, WHO, WHO?
Again, my friend, it's Ringo!!!

JJohn was the leader of a band (the Quarrymen) when he met Paul and invited him to join in (July 6, 1957, The Day That Changed the World), Paul later called his friend George (February 6, 1958), and the three of them decided to call Ringo, in an episode I told on this link, which discusses WHEN The Beatles really started. However, as I know that people hardly click on the internal links, I'll transcribe it here:
On a certain June 6, 1962, still with Pete Best on drums, The Beatles were at EMI, with George Martin, who incidentally did not even hear them live, he did it only on tape, but he saw far, he loved the boys' charisma, he signed a contract, but told them to bring in another drummer. And only then, did Ringo's chance appear. He was already the best drummer in Liverpool (he was the only one of them who had a car), star of the band Rory Storm and The Hurricanes (photo), it was clear that John and Paul wanted him in the band. They made the invitation, he stayed in both bands for a while, until, on August 22, 1962, he took the drumsticks of The Beatles drums, never to release them, except in 'a pair' of three or four brief occasions, for health, holidays or quarrels ... The Beatles were complete!
The Beatles had already adopted that name in 1960, but for me they only really started when Ringo arrived .... so there are still two years to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Band!!!

3. Which Beatle wrote less songs, WHICH, WHICHWHICH?

Yes, my friend, again, our dear Ringo. It would be difficult to compete with John and Paul (who composed 162 songs) and with George (creator of 22). Ringo tried, but whenever he presented his ‘original’ proposals, the most productive ones used to  hum the song of those he plagiarized, it would not fly.
Four songs have the Starkey credit (his name is Richard Starkey) during he Beatles years, but in truth, I only consider "Octopus´s Garden", and "Don´t Pass Me By", as being his own. Of the other two, one is clearly a concession by Lennon, "What Goes On", because he sang it so well, and the other is an instrumental jam session, "Flying". More details:

Even so, my friend, he wrote infinite more songs than Charlie Watts, drummer for the Rolling Stones, or John Bonham from Led Zeppelin, who did not compose any, and an equal number of Nick Mason from Pink Floyd !!! GREAT RINGO !!!

In addition, he had a very cool solo career, of which one day, I'll speak about!!

4. Which Beatle sang less songs, WHICH, WHICHWHICH?

Again, our octogenarian champion! In addition to the ones he composed, John made the beautiful lullaby "Good Night" especially for Ringo to sing for his (John's) son Julian, then 5-years-old, and Paul made two, one of them inspired in his 'less well-off' singer condition, adapting the tone to his shortest reach, "With a Little Help From My Friendsv, and another to use his success with children, "Yellow Submarine". And John and Paul also gave him "I Wanna Be Your Man", a song they had given as a gift to the Rolling Stones for their first hit. Summing up:

And, of course, he had great performances in covers.

"Boys" is my favorite cover of it, since I was a child, when I heard it on the LP Beatles Again, which was released only in Brazil, with songs from the first two LP's and some Beatles' single... oh how much I heard that album... I was only 7.

In just two of the Beatles' 13 LP's, Ringo doesn't do a single 'lead vocal', A Hard Day's Night - 1964 and Let It Be, 1970.

5. Which Beatle did not complete formal education WHICH, WHICHWHICH?

Sua infância em Dingle, bairo pobre de Liverpool
  Yes, my friend, always him, and it was not because of mental incapacity. Ringo's childhood can be compared to a scenario of poverty by Charles Dickens, as remembered Bob Spitz, a great biographer, I strongly recommend his book.

The only son of split parents, with his mother working as a janitor and later as a waitress, he still had a very fragile health. As soon as he was 7, he had an appendicitis that evolved to a peritonitis, that left him in a coma for 15 days, close to death, and forced him to stay in the hospital for a whole year, delaying his learning.

A neighbor of the family tutored him twice a week, he learned well, almost reached the level of the others, but at the age of 13, tuberculosis came on him, and he spent another two years in a sanatorium!!! Wow!!

His friends nicknamed him 'Lazarus'!

He never went back to school ... but that handicap did not stop him from having a good intellectual level and becoming prominent not only for his performance as a musician.
6. Which was the funniest Beatle,  WHICH, WHICHWHICH?
The classification below is the one that most often applies to the boys of Liverpool, since those glorious years.

John was the Smart Beatle,

          Paul was Cute Beatle,

                    George was Quiet Beatle,

But Ringo was the Funny Beatle!

All had their great moments in interviews, but Ringo stood out and associated his aura with body language, with his slight grimaces, with his head movements while playing drums, in addition to his pronounced nose, which certainly contributed to the grace of it!!

Three of his quotes when they arrived in America are still remembered as of today.

-  "How do you find America?"
"Turn left at Greenland.”
- "How do you like America?" 
“America? It's like Britain, only with buttons.”
- “What do you think of Beethoven”
“Great, especially his poetry”

That, in addition to his comedy savvy, featured in the first two Rock Band films in history. In “A Hard Day's Night" - 1964, everyone of them makes faces and mouths and antics, but only Ringo has a long scene, of about 3 minutes, in which his character gets lost from the group and gets into trouble, to the sound of the beautiful "This Boy", sung by the other three in perfect triple vocal harmony, and which, incidentally, was not even part of the soundtrack.

And in "HELP" - 1965, because of this natural histrionism, it is Ringo who wears the famous red ring, the objective of the crazy sect that chases the quartet in the four corners of the world ... Ah, I was forgetting that even in the cartoon "Yellow Submarine” - 1968. It is Ringo who gets lost, until he is found in the land of the Blue Meanies.

7. Witch Beatle marries a Bond Girl, WHICH, WHICHWHICH?

Yes, friend, super Ringo, again!! And it was Barbara Bach, the beautiful brunette who charmed Roger Moore's James Bond in "The Spy Who Loved Me". And they will celebrate 40 years of union next year (I'll talk more about them later). And they have a charitable foundation with many services provided!

Ringo had married Maureen Cox, his Liverpool-based girlfriend, in 1965, already pregnant with Zak, who inherited (and some say he surpassed) his father's art, and is now the drummer for The Who. Ringo stayed with her for 10 years. He had two other children, and eight grandchildren and he is already a great-grandfather.

Contributing to the separation, there was a betrayal that I recount in this excerpt from another post of mine:

“Maureen, however, was also bold, and had an affair with none other than George Harrison (what a bastard!), can you imagine? Even John was amazed, and said it was almost incest. When Ringo heard about it, he was shaken, but he said to his traitorous friend: 'At least it was with you!'”

8. Which Beatle made an acting career after the band broke up, 
Of course, it only could be, our eclectic Ringo Starr! .... John even made a film (“How I Won The War”- 1967, of black humor, but without commercial success), still by the time of the Beatles, but Ringo already showed his skill in the films of the band, launched in the 1960's, as I told above. See how his Wikipedia entry starts:

Sir Richard Starkey Kt, MBE (Liverpool, July 7, 1940), best known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is a British musician, songwriter and ACTOR who has gained fame as a Beatles drummer.

He even went firmly in his career, with some commercial success. He acted, as protagonist, or in a supporting role, in more than 10 films. He was considered a great actor, a natural! He did voiceovers. He narrated a children's program and, as an actor in one season of the show's spin-off series, he even won an Emmy Award nomination.

It can be said that he fulfilled part of the prophecy of the song he recorded in HELP, see part of the lyrics:
They're gonna put me in the movies
They're gonna make a big star out of me
We'll make a film about a man that's sad and lonely
And all I gotta do is act naturally

Well, I'll bet you I'm gonna be a big star

Might win an Oscar, you can never tell

The movies gonna make me a big star
'Cause I can play the part so well 
His great success as an actor, however, and for life, was his meeting with Barbara Bach on the 1980 shooting of "Caveman". He went with her to New York to be with Yoko, the day after John was murdered. He was the only Beatle to do so! They got married the following year, being together until today, for better and for worse, after all she joined him in alcohol addiction, and went into rehab together 7 years later, for 6 weeks, it worked and they have been clean for decades!
9.  What was the lowest BeatleWHICH, WHICHWHICH?
Ringo, again, you all are already used to such answer....

John, Paul and George were around 1.79-meter-high while our Ringo was some 10 centimeters down below. The similarity of the three on the front line brought a special charm to the live performances, but Ringo created a stage piece that set him above them. Inspired by the fans who adored him, he was the first drummer to put his instrument on top of a platform, so that he could be seen by them!!

And this movement of him has caused one of many ‘before-and-after The Beatles' events. The Ludwig Drums, with that logo appearing live for 73 million Americans at the Ed Sullivan show, plus Ringo's formal adoption of the American factory brand,  made the factory close that year with double sales and the next 20 years as a leader in the American drums market ... so much that Ludwig himself gave Ringo a gold-coated drum set!

.... and since we talk about drums ....
10. Which Beatle was left-handed, WHICH, WHICHWHICH,

                    but played his instrument for righties (got you!)?
It is a fact!!!
Paul was left-handed and used his basses and guitars suitable for left-handed, with inverted strings and buttons, Ringo always played right-handed drums, which helped him to create a unique style, admired by his fellow drummers, who do not tire of extolling him. Some of them are still wondering how songs like "Rain", "Tomorrow Never Knows", "Come Together", "Something" and others were performed. You can search YouTube for some ‘isolated drums’ to admire it!!

In addition, he had a sense of rhythm like few others, which was fundamental for the recordings and live shows, although with the tremendous noise of the fans, he admitted that sometimes he needed to be guided by the movement of his friends' butts ... In the 8 years of recordings at Abbey Road, the number of times that a take was interrupted due to a failure of the drummer did not reach a dozen, what is a memorable efficiency, Mark Lewisohn tells us, who had access to all EMI records.

It was not at 100% of the shows that Ringo acted as a drummer. Tonsillitis appeared (health again) on the eve of an international tour in 1964, and they had to call a certain Jimmy Nicol, who had to learn everything in a few hours, for 12 shows. Ringo didn't like it at all, but then he recovered quickly and went to the end of the tour in Australia, arrived early one morning and the other Beatles couldn't even say goodbye to the newbie, who took a check for £500 and a gold watch with a recorded 'thank you'. The check was signed by Lennon/McCartney and today he regrets to have cashed it!

It was not in 100% of the recordings that Ringo acted as a drummer. In the sessions of the White Album - 1968, he felt kind of alone, and left the band, for a triumphant return a few days later. In the meantime, Paul recorded the hit "Back In The USSR" and also "Dear Prudence". On another occasion, John returned inspired from his honeymoon and only Paul was in London, and they recorded, only the two of them, "The Ballad of John & Yoko".

Finally, it was only in the recording of the last song ("The End") of the last LP (Abbey Road) of The Beatles that Ringo had a chance to make one of those solos, which often the drummers do occasionally in other bands, to feel the taste of the protagonism, and he made it to enter the history, it was magnificent !!


After the test session with a single answer, I conclude with a set of additional information about the dear big-nosed Beatle.

I could, for example, add one more question along the lines of others, for example,

'Which Beatle received more fans mail, which, which, which ’... and the answer would be the same. It was a time, mainly around the films, Ringo was very popular!

Want other? 'Which is the most mocked Beatle, which, which, which?', ... and the answer would be the same.

Ringo pays the price for being the last to arrive, for composing little and being overwhelmed, a freshman with three veterans, two of whom are two unattainable lights. See for example, the Beatles were a band in which we treated their names with intimacy, in fact, few bands have the names of their members all known and spoken. However, see HOW we always speak them: It is John, Paul, George and Ringo ... did you get it? ... I will repeat ... John, Paul, George .... AND Ringo ... you see, it's like a formed, established entity AND Ringo, the one who arrived later. Sometimes, he even felt like he was a hired instrumentalist, but soon the others left him as an equal, fundamental to the group's success.
The detractors say that he is only there because he is a lucky man, because he was in the right place at the right time, but you have seen by all the answers of the test, which is very far from that. I even refuse to reproduce here the jokes that talk about it ... in fact, I demand more respect, please, when talking about Ringo Starr.

A picturesque aspect of his presence was the unassuming phrases that have become milestones in Beatle history. At least three of them, I highlight here:

  1. When shooting the first Beatles film, 1964, still without a name, a tiring day, the night comes, Ringo sits in one of those Director's chairs and says to the others: "It’s been a hard day’s night ...". John, who was distracted, listened to it, looked at Paul, and said, "That’s the name!". And then he went home and composed the song, which Paul later complemented, and it became the name of the album and of the film.
  2. Recording day for Revolver album, 1966, Ringo had made a spectacular arrangement for a song by John called "The Void" at that moment, and in a chat with others about life, he uttered a phrase never spoken before: "Ah ... tomorrow never knows ...". As of the moment, "The Void" became "Tomorrow Never Knows", a revolutionary song, definitely marking the turning point of their career.
  3. The name of the last album was being discussed, and how its cover would be, ideas swarmed, Everest, Pyramids of Egypt, Coliseum, there was talk of high costs, but Ringo did not want to take chances in exotic places, which would force him to eat canned beans again, as he did in India, and dropped one: "Oh, come on !! Let’s cross the street and call it Abbey Road!!". It was 1969, and that record would be the last of The Beatles life and that cover, the most famous record cover of all time, at the cost of a few thousand pounds.

Do you want another 'who, who, who' type of question, then take it... Who was the most affable of the four? Yes, of course, super Ringo.
He never stopped accepting invitations to participate in the solidarity shows, for example, shortly after the end of the band, George, a pioneer of it, did the Concert for Bangladesh, Ringo went, Paul and John did not. Ringo was the only one to move from where he was, to give comfort to Yoko and Sean Lennon, on that fateful day, while Paul and George were not. Ringo had in his solo works, contributions from all of the other three fellows, none of the others did that. Ringo was on Maureen's deathbed, even though separated from her. Ringo had been with George for his last few days on this planet, or almost, he had always been there. Anyway, he was the so-called nice guy.
One more? What is the only Beatle to name a planet? Yes, even that! It is a smaller planet 4150 Starr, discovered in 1984 by a fan astronomer.

His solo career, of ups and downs, had at least three #1 hits on the American chart, with two of his compositions, "Photograph" and "It Don’t Come Easy". There were 20 albums recorded in 50 years by several labels, and one with a compilation, "Blast From Your Past", which I have and it is sensational, which has in addition to the two mentioned, "You're Sixteen" (another #1, sensational cover), "No-No Song" (very funny, in which he tells all his vices, which he no longer had), "I'm The Greatest" (by John Lennon, spectacular), in addition to others, an album that I recommend for those who want to have only one Ringo Starr disc. (the cover photo is really shaky!)

Ringo was unable to perform live until 1989, when a friend gave him an idea: gather your friends and go out into the world! And Ringo created the first ‘All Star Band’. He called on instrumentalists who had little activity, or had already finished their careers and went on stage. It was a success! Since then, it has been an excursion every two years or so, and the current edition is number 14. Big stars have participated in his bands, such as Peter Frampton, John Entwisthle (The Who), Joe Walsh (Eagles), Roger Hodgson (Supertramp), Billy Preston, and it also had guests from the places they passed, people like Bruce Springsteen, Slash (Guns & Roses), Steven Tyler (Aerosmith), it was a party. His son Zak also participated, before becoming a drummer for The Who. In the setlist, invariably, the main songs he sang as a Beatle, and his great solo hits, and songs of the guests. At the end of the post, not to hinder the pace here, it's the whole band set story of 'Ringo Star and His All Star Band'.

For better or for worse, Ringo Starr has done enough to keep him as the sixth richest musician in the UK, with a net worth of £260 million, £20 million more than last year.

Certainly, the richest drummer on the planet !!!

Do you need more than that to celebrate it?

Who could tell that a poor boy, who was in a coma, and was admitted to hospitals for 3 years of his childhood and adolescence would arrive where he arrived !!

Hail Ringo ‘Lazarus’ Starr

80 years

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