Tag Archives: Ringo Starr

August 1: Bob Dylan & George Harrison: New York City, New York, 1971 (Video and Audio) – post update

bob dylan george harrison 1971

Bob Dylan & George Harrison: August 1, 1971, New York
The Concert for Bangladesh (or Bangla Desh, as the country name was spelt originally) was the name for two benefit concerts organised by George Harrison and Ravi Shankar, held at 2.30 and 8 pm on Sunday, 1 August 1971, playing to a total of 40,000 people at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The shows were organised to raise international awareness and fund relief efforts for refugees from East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), following the 1970 Bhola cyclone and the civil war-related Bangladesh atrocities. The concerts were followed by a bestselling live album, a boxed three-record set, and Apple Films’ concert documentary, which opened in cinemas in the spring of 1972.The event was the first-ever benefit concert of such a magnitude and featured a supergroup of performers that included Harrison, fellow ex-Beatle Ringo Starr, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Billy Preston, Leon Russell and the band Badfinger. In addition, Shankar and another legend of Indian music, Ali Akbar Khan, performed a separate set. Decades later, Shankar would say of the overwhelming success of the event: “In one day, the whole world knew the name of Bangladesh. It was a fantastic occasion …”
~Wikipedia

 This was Dylan’s first live performance in two years. Harrison had to twist his arm to get him to take part in the benefit concert, and we can be very glad he did: it’s a stunning performance (both shows), modest, confident, richly textured, with Dylan feeling and communicating genuine love for the music he’s playing (in the case of” Blowin’ in the Wind” this was his first public performance of the song in seven years). Most of all, Dylan’s voice on this midsummer afternoon and evening has a rare, penetrating beauty that is immediately noticeable to almost anyone who hears it. This is, in a very real sense, the Dylan a large part of his audience dreams of hearing; this is the voice to fit the stereotyped or mythic image of Bob Dylan, guitar strumming poet laureate of the 1960s.
~Paul Williams (Bob Dylan Performing Artist I: The Early Years 1960-1973)

Madison Square Garden
New York City, New York
1 August 1971
Rehearsals before the Bangla Desh Concert

Continue reading August 1: Bob Dylan & George Harrison: New York City, New York, 1971 (Video and Audio) – post update

July 7: Ringo Starr was born in 1940 Happy 75th Birthday!

Ringo_Starr_and_all_his_band

July 7: Ringo Starr was born in 1940

Ringo was a star in his own right in Liverpool before we even met. Ringo was a professional drummer who sang and performed and was in one of the top groups in Britain, but especially in Liverpool. So Ringo’s talent would have come out one way or the other … whatever that spark is in Ringo, we all know it but can’t put our finger on it. Whether it’s acting, drumming, or singing, I don’t know. There’s something in him that is projectable and he would have surfaced as an individual … Ringo is a damn good drummer.
~John Lennon (Sept 1980)

Beatles accept award Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductions 1988:

Nice tribute video from youtube:

From Wikipedia:

Richard Starkey, MBE (born 7 July 1940), better known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is an English musician and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for the Beatles. When the band formed in 1960, Starr was a member of another Liverpool band, Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. He joined the Beatles in August 1962, taking the place of Pete Best. In addition to his drumming, Starr is featured on lead vocals on a number of successful Beatles songs (in particular, “With a Little Help from My Friends”, “Yellow Submarine”, and the Beatles version of “Act Naturally”). He is credited as a co-writer of the songs “What Goes On” and “Flying”, and as the writer of “Don’t Pass Me By” and “Octopus’s Garden”.

Continue reading July 7: Ringo Starr was born in 1940 Happy 75th Birthday!

June 17: Elvis Presley released From Elvis In Memphis in 1969

from-elvis-in-memphis

“Suddenly, Elvis had to be taken seriously because, suddenly, Elvis was taking the music seriously again. He was expressing his soul, which was plenty deep.”
~Robert Gordon

From Wikipedia:

From Elvis in Memphis is the ninth studio album by American rock and roll singer Elvis Presley, released on RCA Victor. The recording took place at American Sound Studio in Memphis in January and February 1969 under the direction of producer Chips Moman and with the backing of the house band, informally known as “The Memphis Boys”. A direct consequence of the success of Presley’s 1968 Christmas television special and its soundtrack, the recording marked the definite return of Presley to non-soundtrack albums after the completion of his movie contract with Paramount Pictures.

Continue reading June 17: Elvis Presley released From Elvis In Memphis in 1969

June 1: The Beatles released Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967

 

June 1: The Beatles released Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967

“A decisive moment in the history of Western civilisation”
– Kenneth Tynan, The Times

“Sgt Pepper is one of the most important steps in our career. It had to be just right. We tried, and I think succeeded in achieving what we set out to do.”
– John Lennon

The opening track:

We were fed up with being the Beatles. We really hated that fucking four little mop-top boys approach. We were not boys, we were men. It was all gone, all that boy shit, all that screaming, we didn’t want any more, plus, we’d now got turned on to pot and thought of ourselves as artists rather than just performers. There was now more to it; not only had John and I been writing, George had been writing, we’d been in films, John had written books, so it was natural that we should become artists.

– Paul McCartney

I love Sgt. Pepper and it will always be in my top 5 Beatles album, sometimes at number 5 sometimes at the top spot. It’s a great Beatles album,  and it’s one of the best album in Rock history. It is laid out as a concept album, but the idea held for two songs, the coda, and the album’s sleeve design.

The Beatles songs now did not sound practiced or rehearsed, and the reason for this is that they weren’t. They were studio snippets put together in sections and pieces. I think that’s the reason that the outtakes from the Sgt. Pepper sessions are so uninspiring, so unfinished. There are several bootlegs with alternative versions, and for Beatles-nerds they are of course something to seek out. That said, I think the best Sgt.Pepper outtakes are presented on Anthology 2, and, yes, they are put together in the same way as the original album, each song constructed from different takes and sound bites.

I’m guessing it would be a difficult record to play live.

I believe that this album represent a shift in popular music, we look at pop/rock music before and after Sgt. Pepper. Almost everything on the album was new. And it still sounds new and fresh.

Happy birthday, Sgt. Pepper!

The Making of Sgt. Pepper documentary made for the 25 year anniversary :

Continue reading June 1: The Beatles released Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967

Unreleased – Watching Rainbows by The Beatles

Watching Rainbows

Unreleased – Watching Rainbows by The Beatles

The Unreleased series

Our third entry in this series is a song that gets better and better and I really wonder what it could have been if they finished it. It is the song Watching Rainbows by The Beatles. Yes, there are still some unreleased gems out there.

Watching Rainbows is recorded on 14 January 1969 during the massive Get Back sessions at Twickenham Studios. It features John Lennon on lead vocal and electric piano, Paul McCartney on lead guitar, and Ringo Starr on drums. Bass guitar is absent from the song because Paul McCartney is playing George Harrison’s usual role as lead electric guitar.

beatles-1969 watching Rainbows

Why was George absent? We’ll come to that, let us listen to the song first. Bare in mind that this is just as much a jam-session as a finished song, but we get a glimpse into what it could have been.

Watching Rainbows – The Beatles (1969):

George Harrison quit the band for a brief period starting on January 10th, 1969. At the time, The Beatles were practicing at the film studio, Twickenham, so that their rehearsals could be filmed. After a morning filed with verbal altercations between George and Paul, a quiet George Harrison eventually met up with the group and crew for lunch a bit late. Rather than joining them, he simply stated, “See you ’round the clubs” and disappeared.

The three remaining Beatles went back to the recording room not knowing what to do and unleashed an angry improvisational ruckus with John Lennon sarcastically leading the group to play The Who’s “A Quick One, While He’s Away.”

Days later, word got back to Harrison that Lennon had mentioned bringing in Eric Clapton as a replacement, which Lennon had probably said as a ploy to get George back rather than a real solution. After a five-hour meeting, Harrison rejoined the group on January 15th, 1969.

beatles1-400x400
Continue reading Unreleased – Watching Rainbows by The Beatles