Friday, September 20, 2019

Interview: Paul discusses new Polaroids photo book by Linda on BBC's "Newsnight"


Listen: "Come Together" new mix and outtake from Abbey Road 50h Anniversary Edition

Beatles Weekly News Roundup: Only Yesterday; Abbey Road conference; George in India; Carpool Emmy; Linda's Polaroids

The New York Times reviews "Only Yesterday," a new play that focuses on the friendship of John and Paul and the night they stayed up all night talking as the Beatles waiting out Hurricane Dora while on tour in Florida in 1964.
Although fans of the Beatles will undoubtedly find themselves in nostalgic bliss, those less versed in the Fab Four don’t need to know their “Abbey Road” from their “Sgt. Pepper’s” to be delighted by the elegant storytelling and sensitive performances.

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Ringo is a "leaver" in Britain's debate over whether to leave the European Union, but Paul views the Brexit vote as a mistake, he told the BBC this week.
Reflecting on the 2016 Brexit vote, Sir Paul said the arguments made during the campaign had been "all crazy promises".
"What put me off was that I was meeting a lot of older people, kind of pretty much my generation.
"And they were going, 'All right Paul - it's going to be like it was in the old days, we're going to go back.' And it was like, 'Yeah? Oh, I'm not sure about that.' And that attitude was very prevalent.
"I vote for someone I believe in and so often there's nobody I believe in. I have to get a bit inspired. At the moment I'm not really inspired."
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An academic conference on the 50th anniversary of Abbey Road is set for the University of Rochester's Eastman School of Music later this month.

Presenters include audio engineer Ken Townsend, who worked on several Beatles albums, including Rubber Soul, Revolver, and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band; Andy Babiuk, a consultant to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and author of Beatles Gear: All the Fab Four’s Instruments from Stage to Studio; Walter Everett, a professor of music theory at the University of Michigan and author of The Beatles as Musicians; and Kenneth Womack and Katie Kapurch, literary scholars and coeditors of New Critical Perspectives on the Beatles: Things We Said Today.

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Here's some rare video of George in India in 1968 recording the "Wonder Wall" soundtrack with Indian musicians.
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“Carpool Karaoke: When Corden Met McCartney Live From Liverpool” won an Emmy for best variety special this week.
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The Guardian previews a new book that collects Linda McCartney's Polaroid photography.


Friday, September 13, 2019

News release on Ringo's new LP: "What's My Name"


Here's a news release with more info on Ringo's new LP, out Oct. 25.
Today, Ringo Starr announced his 20th studio record, What's My Name, to be released on UMe October 25, 2019. What's My Name is the latest in a series of heartfelt and homespun records that Starr has produced in his home studio and a distinguished, ever-changing yet often repeating cast of musical characters and friends playing along with Ringo. Those friends include Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh, Edgar Winter, Dave Stewart, Benmont Tench, Steve Lukather, Nathan East, Colin Hay, Richard Page, Warren Ham, Windy Wagner, Kari Kimmel and more (full track and credit list below).
For Ringo, recording at home, known as Roccabella West, has become a welcome and productive way of life.
"I don't want to be in an old-fashioned recording studio anymore, really," Starr explains. "I've had enough of the big glass wall and the separation.  We are all together in here, whoever I invite over. This is the smallest club in town. And I love it, being at home, being able to say hi to Barb, it's just been good for me and the music."
With the help of the many familiar faces appearing on the album and in the credits, as well as Bruce Sugar recording and mixing, What's My Name reflects Ringo desire to keep his homemade music feeling fresh and vital, whether by introducing new collaborators, like songwriter Sam Hollander, or by being more open to recording songs he has not written, co-written or in one case, even produced. "Sam Hollander's people got to Bruce Grakal, my lawyer, and said, "Sam would like to say hi to Ringo." So I told Sam to come over. After we wrote a song together, "Thank God For Music." Then Sam called and said, "I think I may have another song," so I said, "Let me hear it." He had written it all. He had written a song out of things I said in an interview in Rolling Stone.  I loved the sentiment of it – he had one verse about spending too much time in hospitals, but I didn't want to even sing that verse – the pity verse. Sam came over and I put the vocals on, and said, `You produce this one,' but Sam said, "Well, you're going to do drums." So, I went in and played it through twice." I like two takes. And he took "Better Days" away and did it."
The new album's title track and first single -- "What's My Name" -- is a rousing anthem written by a returning All-Starr Band member this past summer, Colin Hay, that turns a familiar chant from Ringo's live shows into a rousing rocker sure to be a future crowd-pleaser. "This was Colin Hay's fourth time in the All-Starr Band, and a friend told me that, unbeknownst to me, Colin wrote a song years ago called, "What's My Name." I said, "Bring it up to the house and let's hear it." Later I heard, Colin couldn't find it! He'd written the song down six years ago and put it in this pile or that pile.  But it ended up at the bottom of the drawer. So, Colin came over and played it for me, and I LOVED it. I loved the verses. I loved the sentiment. In all honesty, there's not a lot of people who could get away with asking, "What's my name?" in a song. If you've been to the show, you already know the title. I'm blessed that most things coming my way are peace and love. There are still always trials and tribulations. But I just feel in life, the sun shines this way. I'm blessed. I always have the same talk – an audience can be tortured. We give them everything we've got. We give each other everything we've got. And sometimes it's not enough. But most nights it's everything. I'll play the best I can for you. And you play the best you can for me. That's all I can ask."
Yet the emotional centerpiece of What's My Name is Starr's deeply felt version of "Grow Old With Me" by his late great friend John Lennon. This is a performance for the ages, one made all the more powerful and moving when we realize that Ringo is blessed to be still living the dream of growing older with the one he loves in a way that his beloved friend John was imagining with Yoko when he wrote this song in the years before his tragic death.  As Starr rightly notes with a warm smile, "I'm still living that dream."
For Ringo, the inspiration to record "Grow Old With Me" now came when he ran into noted record producer Jack Douglas who had produced John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Double Fantasy album, among other classic recordings.
"Jack asked if I ever heard The Bermuda Tapes, John's demos from that time," Ringo recalls. "And I had never heard all this. The idea that John was talking about me in that time before he died, well, I'm an emotional person. And I just loved this song. I sang it the best that I could. I do well up when I think of John this deeply. And I've done my best. We've done our best. The other good thing is that I really wanted Paul to play on it, and he said yes. Paul came over and he played bass and sings a little bit on this with me. So John's on it in a way. I'm on it and Paul's on it. It's not a publicity stunt. This is just what I wanted. And the strings that Jack arranged for this track, if you really listen, they do one line from "Here Comes The Sun." So in a way, it's the four of us."
What's My Name is filled with other stand out collaborations and inspirations – starting with the opening track, the rocking "Gotta Get Up To Get Down", which Starr co-wrote with his brother in law and long-time musical partner Joe Walsh. "I've been making music with Joe long before we became brothers," Ringo said. "And we were having dinner with Klaus Voorman months ago, and for whatever, I said, "Well, you've got to get up to get down." Joe and looked at each other and said, "We know that's the title, so let's write a song about it. "That's how it is."
"Edgar Winter's part on this track is just incredible. Edgar's always incredible, but he out does himself in my book." Additional tracks include: "It's Not Love That You Want;" "Magic" co- written with his long time All-Starr Steve Lukather. "I wrote that with Steve Lukather, who is magic. I made a mistake of telling Steve, "You're my last best friend," and so that how we're live now. And he's a beautiful guy. He sometimes puts out a hard shell, but he is so soulful. We work well together. And he's even better when he's not playing a thousand notes a minute – which he can. He's the man. I love the man. Don't tell him. Sometimes Steve's so happy playing with me, I say, "You're having too much fun."
A cover of the classic "Money (That's What I Want);" "Send Love, Spread Peace" and "Life Is Good," which was inspired by the book written by the optimistic apparel company of the same name founded by Bert & John Jacobs. "I went to receive my honor at the Paley Center last year and I was wearing a hat that said, "Life is Good." I liked the sentiment. And the guys from the Life is Good organization sent me t-shirts and a book, and Gary and I noticed that. And that's how we wrote it. If we have a title, we just go."
What's My Name – to that question writer David Wild mused, What's In A Name?
In the spectacular and singular case of Ringo Starr, what's in his name is an enduringly fabulous lifetime of music & meaning, and yes, Peace & Love that all comes through loud and clear on Ringo's latest album, What's My Name.
Yes, there's more than half a century of illustrious history in Ringo's name. Yet what makes all that mean so much here and now is that the artist formerly known as Richard Starkey keeps earning his excellent and beloved name all over again, every time that he takes the stage with one of his All-Starr Bands and whenever he releases new music.
In the best way possible, drumming remains Ringo's madness, and keeps him moving forward in time. As Starr remembers affectionately, "When I was a teenager, my mom always said, "Son, you're at your happiest when you're playing." And it's still true to this day. I'm blessed. I had a dream back when I was thirteen, and just last night I played with all my friends at the Greek, and I've been putting together All-Starr bands for 30 years. And it's still a thrill."
What's My Name - The Track listing & Credits:
Produced by: Ringo Starr
Recorded and mixed by: Bruce Sugar
Pro Tools Editing: Bruce Sugar
Recorded at: Roccabella West Studio, United Recording
Gotta Get Up To Get Down (Richard Starkey, Joe Walsh)
Drums, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar, Vocals: Joe Walsh
Clavinet, Synthesizer, Vocals: Edgar Winter
Bass: Nathan East
Synthesizer: Bruce Sugar
BGV: Richard Page, Warren Ham, Windy Wagner, Kari Kimmel
Its Not Love That You Want (Richard Starkey, Dave Stewart)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar: Dave Stewart
 Bass: Nathan East
Piano: Jim Cox
Clavinet: Benmont Tench
Synth Horns: Bruce Sugar
BGV: Windy Wagner, Amy Keys
Additional Engineering: Ned Douglas
Grow Old With Me (John Lennon)
Drums, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Bass, BGV: Paul McCartney
Guitar: Joe Walsh
Piano: Jim Cox
Violin: Rhea Fowler, Bianca McClure
Viola:  Lauren Baba
Cello:  Isaiah Gage
Accordion: Allison Lovejoy
String Arrangement by Jack Douglas, Daniel Cole
Assistant Engineer on string session: Wesley Seidman
Magic (Richard Starkey, Steve Lukather)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar, Piano: Steve Lukather
Bass: John Pierce
Synthesizer: Bruce Sugar
BGV:  Richard Page, Warren Ham, Windy Wagner, Kari Kimmel
Money (That's What I Want) (Berry Gordy, Janie Bradford)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar: Steve Lukather
Bass: Nathan East
BGV: Maxine Waters, Julia Waters
Piano, Organ, Synth: Bruce Sugar
Better Days (Sam Hollander)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Piano: Grant Michaels
Organ: Peter Levin
Bass: Kaveh Rastegar
Guitar: Pete Min
BGV: Zelma Davis, Garen Gueyikian
Horns: James King
Produced by: Ringo Starr, Sam Hollander
Life Is Good (Richard Starkey, Gary Burr)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar: Steve Lukather
Bass: Nathan East
Organ: Benmont Tench
Synthesizer: Bruce Sugar
BGV:  Richard Page, Warren Ham, Windy Wagner, Kari Kimmel
Thank God For Music (Richard Starkey, Sam Hollander)
Drums: Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar:  Steve Lukather
Synth Bass, Piano, Organ: Jim Cox
Synth Voice Pad: Bruce Sugar
BGV: Maxine Waters, Julia Waters
Send Love Spread Peace (Richard Starkey, Gary Nicholson)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar: Steve Dudas
Bass: Nathan East
Organ, Piano:  Benmont Tench
BGV: Windy Wagner, Amy Keys
What's My Name (Colin Hay)
Drums, Percussion, Vocals: Ringo Starr
Guitar, BGV: Colin Hay
Guitar: Steve Lukather
Bass: Nathan East
Harmonica: Warren Ham
BGV: Maxine Waters, Julia Waters

Video: Paul's booksigning

Official video of Paul's visit to Waterstones bookstore in London last week to sign copies of his new children's book "Hey, Grandude!"

Hear the title track of Ringo's new album: "What's My Name"


Ringo's new LP is out Oct. 25 and features a cover version of John Lennon's "Grow Old With Me," with Paul McCartney on vocals. Other guests on the album include Joe Walsh, Edgar Winter, Steve Lukather & Dave Stewart.