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“It’s just a happy coincidence.” That’s my oft-repeated mantra when I’m asked if I’m related to Ringo Starr, the subject of my new book, “Ringo: With a Little Help” — the first comprehensive biography of The World’s Most Famous Drummer.

You’d be surprised how often I’m asked that particular question, mostly by people who either don’t know — or just plain forgot — that Ringo Starr was born Richard Starkey in Liverpool, England 75 years ago on July 7, 1940.

But that’s not the only thing about Ringo that people forget — or didn’t know about him in the first place:

The ingrained Dickensian image (particularly among Beatles fans) of Richy Starkey growing up dirt-poor in Liverpool? Not quite. While Richy and his mom, Elsie, lived in the Dingle — a gritty part of town located near the rough-and-tumble Liverpool docks — Elsie worked several jobs (barmaid, cleaning houses) to keep a relatively comfortable roof over Richy’s head. A photo from his youth shows Richy and his childhood friend, Dave Patterson, posing in sharp suits — and the Starkey grandparents lived just down the street details

Paul McCartney has spoken out about the British government's impending amendment that will once again open the door for fox hunting in England and Wales. In a statement, the bassist and longtime animal rights activist called the sport "cruel and unnecessary" and threatened that, by passing the bill, the conservative Tory party "would lose support from ordinary people and animal lovers like myself." 

"The people of Britain are behind this Tory government on many things, but the vast majority of us will be against them if hunting is reintroduced," McCartney said. In 2004, the British government placed stricter restrictions on fox hunting, which was practiced legally for sport for nearly five centuries until the legislation passed. However, current Prime Minister David Cameron revealed in March he hoped to repeal the ban as long as the fox hunts were "appropriate" and done "efficiently," The Guardian reports.

McCartney isn't the only rocker to argue against renewing fox hunts: On July 9th, Queen guitarist Brian May appeared on BBC's Newsnight to slam the amendment, which will be put to a vote on July 15th. "There is no justification for the hunting of foxes on the grounds of control of foxes," May said. "They details

For those of you who haven’t watched the Beatles’ 1970 documentary Let it Be (likely through less than legal means, for reasons I will get into here), here’s what went down: After noticing how unusual The White Album turned out to be, especially with the songs increasingly becoming less rock n roll, and being less group-oriented, Paul decided the band should get back to basics, writing new songs and performing them at a special concert that nobody agreed exactly where it should take place. They decided to rehearse at Twickenham Studios in London and have a crew film them for a possible TV Special. It did not go well; instead of showcasing a reborn Beatles, it showed off the beginning of the end, with constant fighting between Paul and the other members of the band. In the end, the concert did take place, on the Apple Studios rooftop, and the footage for the TV special was released into a full-blown movie.

However, the last time it was released to home video, it was in 1981. In the decades since, the band has teased the possibility of a rerelease (including, in 1992, doing what appeared to be a full restoration of the film which only saw the light of day through snippets on the Anthology miniseries,) bu details

Alex Ross made his name with his painted, nearly photorealist artwork for superhero comic books, most famously Kingdom Come and Marvels. Now he's turning his hand to a different set of visual icons. Rolling Stone can exclusively reveal Ross's series of illustrations of the Beatles, created with the blessing of the band's organization Apple Corps. Ross is set to unveil the artwork in person at this week's Comic-Con International in San Diego.

The first fruit of the project was a six-foot-wide print of the band; a painterly, CinemaScope-style re-envisioning of the distinctly cartoony, two-dimensional imagery from the Beatles' 1968 animated movie Yellow Submarine.

"I was very much raised on that film," Ross tells Rolling Stone, "so I know every detail of it, and I can import that into my work, as though it was a live-action film that they starred in. I was warned at the outset that they might not get approval from the [John Lennon and George Harrison] estates to release it formally — that it was a kind of test. I thought I might not get another chance at this, so I wanted to put everything plus the kitchen sink in one piece of art."

By: Douglas Wolk

Source: Rolling Stone

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Richard Starkey, aka Ringo Starr, turns 75 on July 7th. The lad from Liverpool who’s been the world’s most famous drummer for more than a half-century has provided the world with infinite musical reasons to celebrate his life and work. Less immediately known but certainly also worthy of celebrating is Ringo Starr’s one-of-a-kind cinematic career.

Inherently funny, sympathetic, and warm, Ringo looks like a born character actor and exudes a screen presence on par with his dynamism behind a drum kit. He so clearly and effortlessly steals the Beatles’ debut classic A Hard Day’s Night (1964) that the follow-up, Help! (1965), is built around him.

More work with the Beatles followed from there, but unlike most of his bandmates, Ringo kept it up until he was a bona fide go-to film actor (his only real competition of note was John Lennon, who co-starred in the 1967 satire, How I Won the War, before returning to focus on music).

So for Ringo’s reaching his seven-and-a-half-decade milestone as one of rock’s defining icons, let’s light up our screens with a salute to his secondary career as a movie Starr.

By: Mike McPadden

Source: VH1

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Out of 308 songs penned by the Fab Four, 48 (16 per cent) make reference to the weather, researchers found

    by Sarah Knapton July 7, 2015

Britain may have become obsessed with The Beatles because they bombarded the public with songs about the weather, a new study suggests.

Brits love nothing more than moaning about the weather and it seems a spell of bad weather is an inspiration for songwriters too.

Over 900 songwriters or singers have written or sung about weather - and The Beatles are among the most prolific, researchers from Oxford and Southampton Universities found.

Dr Sally Brown, of Southampton University, said: "We were all surprised how often weather is communicated in popular music whether as a simple analogy or a major theme of a song.

"These examples indicate discussing weather - often seen as a British obsession - is a popular pastime, and much can be learnt from how society portrays weather in music and the types of weather that inspire musicians.

"Thousands of popular songs have been written, many hundreds of which contain references to weather.”

Rain was a frequent theme employed by The Beatles
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We all live in a Jell-O submarine!

A Brooklyn-based artist recreated some of The Beatles’ most iconic photo shoots and album artwork using gelatin.

Henry Hargreaves, a 36-year-old New Zealand native, started the unique artwork back in June, mixing up different colors of the snack to create edible portraits of the British band.

Each painting took about two hours to create — with Hargreaves using plasticine to make an outline and then filling it in with gelatin.

“I’ve always enjoyed toying with people’s expectations when it comes to food,” Hargreaves told Barcroft Media.

“Here, viewers might be fooled into thinking they’re looking at a 2-D illustration of the yellow submarine, but upon closer inspection, they’ll realize the reflective color blocks are in fact made entirely of jelly,” he added.

Hargreaves is a full-time photographer and food artist who made headlines last year for his photo series that cataloged death row inmates’ last meal choices.

 

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It has been over 50 years since Beatlemania took over the world, going on to produce hits like Eleanor Rigby, Love Me Do and Yellow Submarine. Speaking in a new interview with Esquire Magazine, Paul McCartney has revealed he doesn't think any modern day band will be able to recreate the same success as The Beatles. The 73-year-old singer claims the British rock band - made up of Paul, John Lennon, Ringo Starr and George Harrison - found worldwide fame thanks to writing their own material and their own individual skillset.

'Let's not forget, those four boys were f***ing good,’ he confessed. ‘You name me another group who had what The Beatles had. 

'We all played, which is pretty hard. You don't get a lot of that these days. ‘We came at the right time. We wrote some pretty good stuff, our own material. We didn't have writers. Could that happen again? I don't know. I wish people well but I have a feeling it couldn't.' 

When quizzed about his ‘goodboy’ image, Paul said: ‘It’s something I’ve not cultivated. 'But I think when you become a family man, when you’ve got grandkids and you openly admire them, that gets cuddly. ‘With the knighthood details

His is the voice on “Yellow Submarine,’ “Octopus’ Garden’ and “With a Little Help From My Friends.”

Now, a new biography chronicles Ringo Starr’s life. In “Ringo: With a Little Help,” author Michael Seth Starr – no relation to Ringo Starr – tells the story of the drummer from his earliest days on the streets of Liverpool to the height of mega-fame as one of the four band members in the Beatles.

In an interview with ABC News’ Juju Chang that aired on "Good Morning America" today, Starr said the American audience got its first glimpse of Ringo as “the funny Beatle” when the band appeared on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1964. “They fell in love with him immediately and the public – it’s funny, if you watch their famous appearance” on the “The Ed Sullivan Snow,” Starr got the “most applause" when he was shown, the author said.

Ringo’s goofball personality was on display in the movies “A Hard Day’s Night” and “Help.”

“Ringo has a natural affinity for clowning around and comedy … he did make several movies while the details

"You see so many people who retire and then immediately expire," says McCartney. Despite achieving more than any man (or any star) could ever dream of, the 73-year old has no intention of ever stopping. "Sit at home and watch telly? That’s what people do, man. Gardening, golf… no thanks," he declares. "My manager, who I don’t have any more, glad to say, suggested quite a long time ago that I retire at 50. He sort of said it’s not a good look. I went, 'Oh, God, he could be right.' "But then I still enjoy writing, I still enjoy singing. What am I gonna do?"

The living legend is about to play at Roskilde tomorrow, followed by dates in Norway and Sweden on the Out There tour, and then on to Lollapalooza at the end of July. He also hit the charts recently with two of the world's hottest younger stars, Rihanna and Kanye West, even if he ruffled some feathers by comparing Kanye to John Lennon. It seems unbelievable that a man who has is still touring, who has sold over 600 million records with The Beatles alone, plus his solo releases, could possibly feel that he hasn't done enough. Yet, he does.

"It is a silly feeling,' he admits. "And I do actually sometimes talk to myself and say, 'Wait a mi details

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