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Ringo’s All-Starr Band Reveals Their Favorite Beatles Albums

Ringo Starr
Christian Augustin, Getty Images

It’s summer, and Ringo Starr is back on the road with another lineup of his long-running All-Starr Band — all of whom recently sat down with Rock Cellar Magazine to share their favorite Beatles albums.

First up, naturally, was Ringo himself. And while a lot of musicians would have a hard time just picking one Beatles record to hold up above the others, Ringo narrowed his choice down to one side: “For me, that would be the second side of ‘Abbey Road,’” he told Rock Cellar. That one is my favorite because I just love all those bits and pieces that weren’t full songs that John and Paul had been working on and pulled all together — ‘Mean Mr. Mustard,’ ‘Polythene Pam,’ and ‘She Came in Through the Bathroom Window.’”

“‘Meet the Beatles’ — that was the life changer for me, with the song ‘I Saw Her Standing There,’” countered guitarist Steve Lukather. “It was George’s solo – well, everything really. My father had bought that album for me when I was seven, and I wore that record out! It was the ‘on’ switch to my life, and every song was magic. The sound was otherworldly to me, as if something from another place and time came to touch me.”

“I’d have to say ‘A Hard Day’s Night,’” mused drummer Gregg Bissonette. “I was seven years old at the time, and it was the first time I heard the Beatles. I remember going to the drive-in movies and seeing ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ and hearing songs like ‘Can’t Buy Me Love,’ ‘You Can’t Do That,’ and ‘Any Time at All.’”

Todd Rundgren remembered the first time he heard a Beatles song, quipping, “I remember hearing the song ‘Please Please Me’ on the car radio, from their debut album, and thinking, “Wow — that’s different! That’s different from the usual crap we hear on the radio.”

“Lemme tell you, I wasn’t a huge Beatles fan in the beginning,” admitted bassist Richard Page. “All that changed when I discovered ‘Revolver,’ and then I really, really got what they were all about. That album blew my mind because it was so intricate and so interesting lyrically and compositionally.”

The question was a little tougher for keyboardist Gregg Rolie, who sighed, “Man, there are so many of them that would be hard to choose just one.” Singling out ‘Revolver,’ ‘Rubber Soul,’ and ‘Sgt. Pepper’s,’ he refused to pick a favorite, saying, “I can’t pick just one album, because their whole career was brilliant, and to think that it actually happened over the period of nine years — all that music was created. I’ve never seen anything so prolific as that.”

Multi-instrumentalist Mark Rivera had no such problems, instantly answering, “‘Revolver,’ no question. I absolutely love ‘Revolver.’” His reason? “I love all the Beatles albums — as I like to call them, because they were albums — but that one in particular because when engineer Geoff Emerick started the recording, he just totally went against the grain.”

The band’s answers really only scratch the surface of a long, informative interview — one that also finds Starr reminiscing about his days with Clarence Clemons and Levon Helm, Rundgren making fun of Justin Bieber‘s hair, and a number of the band members discussing their own upcoming albums. Take a look at the complete article here.

Next: Best Beatles Love Songs

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