Music News

Can you believe Ringo Starr is turning 80 next week?

It’s true, and while the coronavirus is preventing him from having his typical birthday extravaganza, a virtual celebration will allow us all to celebrate with Starr– and some impressive friends.

“As everyone knows, I love gathering with fans for peace and love on my birthday,” Starr said in a statement. “But this year, I want everyone to be safe at home – so I called up a few friends, and we put this Big Birthday Show together so we could still celebrate my birthday with you all with some great music for some great charities. I hope you will all join me! Peace and love, Ringo.”

The party happens on YouTube on July 7 at 8PM ET and will include home performances and previously unseen concert footage from Starr, fellow Beatle Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh, Gary Clark Jr., Sheryl Crow, Sheila E., Ben Harper and more.

The stream will also include the premiere of Starr’s guest-packed version of “Give Me Love” featuring Jeff Bridges, Jackson Browne, Elvis Costello, Peter Frampton, Willie Nelson, Kenny Loggins, Michael McDonald, Keb’ Mo’, Steve Earle, Rodney Crowell, T Bone Burnett and Ray Wylie Hubbard.

In conjunction with the event, Starr’s YouTube channel will feature several other tribute performances, including new versions and recordings from previous birthday celebrations. Those artists include Costello, Frampton, Gregg Rolie, Steve Lukather, Ben Folds, Colin Hay, Judy Collins, Richard Marx, Ben Dickey and Bettye LaVette, among others.

Check out Ringo’s message of “peace and love”…

Ready for more great music? wfpk.org/stream

Mel is the WFPK mid-day host.