Aug. 7 - Helsinki, Finland
Just wanted to let you know that Ringo and the All Starrs opening
night was great. Good music, great musicians, and a lot of fun. There was
a girl with a plastic-delphin, ( a beach toy) and Ringo asked what he and
the dolphin had in common - "Do I sing about a dolphin? The nearest
I get to a dolphin is under water , so here is Yellow Submarine"
The band played for 2 hours 15 minutes. Ringo preformed "Love Me Do" and "La De Da" (from Vertical Man. Gary Brooker preformed "Whisky Train," "Conquistador," "A Salty Dog," and "A
Whiter Shade of Pale." The others preformed their usual stuff.
When Ringo asked if we were having fun, he said they had as well, "We didn't get to Helsinki to be tortured" It had a feeling of opening night, they were so sharp. Jack got over a
bit with his show off, but it was a great show.
I had been looking forward to Ringo's concert
all summer, and it proved to be worth all the waiting!!
The press over here hadn't taken much notice of the event other than the occasional TV or newspaper ad. The reason was prehaps that the Rolling Stones were preforming two days prior to Ringo and they got all the attention. In fact the largest-selling newspaper in Finland totally trashed Ringo a few days before the concert, basically calling him untalanted and estimated that he would sing the one song he is known for from his Beatles days (i.e. Yellow Submarine), and the reviews afterwards were not much better. Poor Ringo! I found out that I would not have had to skip school back in April to get my tickets, there were a lot of empty seats left in the icehall. It was estimated that about 2,000 people turned up.
The concert was, in my opinion, absolutely fantastic. Ringo was in great shape, he looked great (for his age), he jumped around on the stage and joked with the audience. For instance, someone had brought an inflatable dolphin (!) and Ringo said he didn't get it, did he sing a song about dolphins?, and then spontainiously started singing a little bit of "Octopus's Garden", changing "octopus" to "dolphin". When another audience member yelled "Ringo, we love you" he replied "Things must be really slow in Finland".
I located the icehall 1 and 1/2 hour before the concert and when I took my seat (ca 15 meters from the stage) I noticed - around the time when the show was to begin - that the icehall was only half full. That made me a little sad (the Rolling Stones played the Olympic arena just 2 days erlier so I guess many had decided to see them instead).
Anyway...it was an enthusiastic crowd and after a while I didn´t care about it any more.
Ringo began with It don´t come easy (a great song as a starter, and he didn´t sing it in 1992), followed by Act naturally. Then he handled the mic. over to the others. I don´t know the names of the songs sung by Frampton & Co, after a few numbers RIngo came back and did Boys followed by the big surprise Love me do (it was great to hear that one live!). Boys and Love med do he sang behind his drums. Later on he sang Yellow submarine, I´m the greatest, No, no song and La de da (I still think Puppet should have been the first single from the album).
Ringo also sang I wanna be your man (fantastic live, different arrangements every tour) then Photograph and closing with With a little help...
It´s always a thrill to see Ringo sing and play, but isn´t it time to drop some of the songs and replace them with Octopus´ Garden, Matchbox and Only you for instance?
Aug. 9 - Skanderborg, Denmark
It was a beautiful Sunday evening after a long hot day that the All Starr Band took their places on stage, bringing the 4 day danish rock and blues festival in the woods to it's climactical conclusion. The band had already started playing "It Don't Come Easy" when I took my place in the audience. My late arrival had a good excuse, I had just been back stage wishing Ringo the best of luck with his show! He didn't need it, when he appeared on stage a little after 10 pm, hundreds of people were holding up sparkle sticks, making the natural valley-shape of the festival site resemble a dark cathedral with lots of candles lit. Ringo liked what he saw, and thanked the audience. He seemed to be in a good mood, and he was shining throughout the concert, obviously both enjoying his own spots in the show as well as being the session man on all those great hits from his fellow bandmembers Mark Rivera (Sax, percussion,keyboards), Gary Brooker (keyboards), Peter Frampton(electric guitar), Simon Kirke (drums) and Jack Bruce (fretless bass guitar).
Mark Rivera didn't have a solo spot. I was
sorry that it turned out to be such a short set, and I was hoping that Ringo
would let us hear Octopus' Garden and Don't Pass Me By since he had performed
these recently on american TV. A little less Peter Frampton and a lot more
of Ringo would have been more to my liking. Nearly all the songs performed
were warmly welcomed by the festivalgoers, because you could clearly hear
the audience respond by singing loudly along with most of the songs. The
biggest crowdpleasers and sing-along-songs were Love Me Do, Boys, La De
Da, All Right Now, A Whiter Shade of Pale,Yellow Submarine and With A Little
Help From My Friends. Yellow Submarine was the last song to be performed
in the regular set, and the band was called back on stage for the encore
by the audience who continued to sing Yellow Submarine. Ringo: "Shall
we do that one again? I think you'll enjoy this one as well!" The musicianship
was brilliant all the way through, and Ringo did an excellent job on drums,
as did Simon Kirke. The other musicians were given opportunities to solo
away on their own instruments and Jack Bruce especially did an awesome bass-solo.
~ Roger Stormo
Beatles fanclub of Norway
Aug. 16 - Leuven, Belgium
Ringo played :-It Don't Come Easy, Act Naturally, Boys, I'm the
Greatest, La De Da, Love Me Do, Yellow Submarine and With a Little Help
From My Friends.-That's all.
Only one song from Vertical Man is not enough. I don't know how you feel about it, but I'm
tired of hearing "Yellow Sub" and "With aLittle Help..." Maybe it is too complicated for the other band members but why not ""Without understanding" which should be the next single and a...Number 1 hit ! I had the feeling that the other band members had more succes and applause than Ringo, especially Peter Frampton.
Ringo's act is too slow, there is no punch in it, no really strong numbers!.-
Belgian TV (VTM, VRTand RTL)praised the show a lot, giving interviews with Ringo and showed extracts from the show for 2 days in their news reels. TV was authorized to film the 2 first songs.-Press photographers were allowed to take pictures from the 3 first songs.- The audience was allowed to take pictures as many as they wanted but without a flash.-
~ Raphaël Vandenberghe
Aug. 20 - Dublin, Ireland
A great concert from a GREAT (drummer,singer,performer,,joker...etc)...the
concert was amazing ...i went crazy when i heared the Intro of 'It don't
come easy' ...i just stood up and yelled "RIIINNNNNGGGOOOOO"...and
then i said something like "WHAT?!?!..WHERE IS HE!?!?" ....and
he came running ...the whole crowd stood up ....the song was great!!....and
then he sang other songs that are mentioned in other reviews!... but before
'Love me do' ..he said "This song was recorded by another band...but
this is MY version of it "....i wonder why he didn't say the beatles...
Then before 'I'm the greatest' he said "This song was written specially FOR me by a very dear friend ..god rest his soul" ...I WONDER WHY HE DIDN'T say John Lennon??.
Then after 'Photograph' , he said the show was ended but when he came back after the crowds went crazy he said "It's all in the rock'n roll business ...we go ..then we come back".....
He yelled at this guy/girl who wanted to give him something ... he was like "SIT DOWN..I WON'T TAKE IT ..JUST SIT DOWN"....then when the secuirty guy came to kick him/her out ...he yelled again "I TOLD HER TO SIT DOWN...DON'T KICK HER OUT"....heheheh...it was just funny!:)...
What can you say about such a fantastic line-up that hasn't already been said. My review was going to exactly like the one Paul Kindred has already submitted.
So if you want to know what Dublin was like then read Paul's review of the London Concert, both were identical in line-up, set list and artists performance, an absolutely fantastic night. really glad I was there. If anyone recorded any of the shows please let me know, and if the Japanese
gentlemen was was in the row behind me and recorded the whole thing onto video is reading this, can I have a copy, pleeeaaaasssseeeeeee. If the tour comes your way don't miss it. One of the best shows I have ever been at.
~ Noel Lackey
Aug. 21 - London, England
My wife & I
travelled about 140 miles from South Wales to London for this long awaited
gig, but was it worth it!! As it took us longer than expected to get to
Shepherd's Bush from where we were staying, we ended up about 20 feet or
so back from the stage. The band came on at 8:20, straight into a cool rendition
of "It Don't Come Easy" (cue me welling up like an idiot immediately
Ringo walked on during that amazing intro). Then "No No Song",
complete with slightly fluffed lyrics - having mistakenly rhymed "Majorca,
Spain" with "marijuana" in the first
verse, Ringo just laughed & set about rhyming "Columbia" with "cocaine" in the second! He was in great voice all night & hilarious with it. He was dressed a gold shirt similar to the jacket he wears in some of the recent publicity shots, over a black T-shirt with a picture of Buddha(?) & the legend "The People's Friend". Oh, & sunglasses of course!
During the set the band all got a look in with their own hits. Notably Peter Frampton (who was phenomenal all night) did "Show Me The Way" & "Baby I Love Your Way", Jack Bruce got to do storming versions of "Sunshine Of Your Love" & "White Room" & Gary Brooker played a moving version of "A Whiter Shade Of Pale". After "Yellow Submarine" (I was almost crying with joy as the whole crowd sang John's bit's in the third verse, especially the loudest "submarine, ah ha!" you've ever heard!) Gary smiled & said "you can't follow 'Yellow Submarine', but I thought I'd at least follow one song about sailing with another" before doing just that - "A Salty Dog" no less, & fine it was too. Simon Kirke's two numbers were a country rocker called "Shooting Star" &, of course, "All Right Now". The surprising thing was that he sang them himself & did a very passable impression of Paul Rodgers on the latter to boot! Seeing & hearing Ringo playing on these songs was weird & a little unsettling at first, but he was, literally, "fab"ulous. Talk about a contrast between two drummers! Simon Kirke was all muscular stadium drummer, very loud & energetic, full of sharp, Kenny Jones type big rock fills. Ringo was Ringo, laid back, more old fashioned & far more soulful. He lay on the beat magnificently & his fills were always just right - subtle, 60s, utterly Ringo affairs that whispered majestically, in contrast to Simon Kirke's big beat shouting it's head off. Do you get the impression that I was
knocked out? That's OK then....
The highlight of "totally solo" section in the middle of the set was a great Gary Brooker ballad which I'm afraid I didn't recognise, but which was spine tinglingly beautiful. The others faired less
well here though. A Jack Bruce/Peter Frampton duet which again I didn't know was rather turgid went on far too long - as did Jack's bass solo in a full band Frampton song later - the first 2 minutes were great, but did we really need the next 5?!?
Anyway, these odd moments aside it was a fabulous 2 & a quarter hour show. The only 2 songs from "Vertical Man" were an adrenaline powered "Love Me Do" ("... an old song that you'll all know, but this is MY version") & a superb version of "La De Da". "This song is number one in Poland" joked Ringo - well there must have been a few Poles in the house, as the
whole crowd sang happily throughout, especially on the train noises & so on!! To everyone's delight we also got oldies like "Boys" & "I Wanna Be Your Man", these & "Love Me Do" with Ringo singing from behind the kit, as in the good old days. "Boys" was like looking mistily back through time to 1963. Talk about a lump in the throat! Other great moments included "Photograph" ("this is a song I wrote back in 1794"), "I'm The Greatest" (Ringo laughing pointedly at the updated "now I'm no longer 32") & the encore, inevitably, "With A Little Help From My Friends". We all helped of course, & were glad too!
A wonderful night, full of weird personal moments too. During "It Don't Come Easy" for instance, both I & the equally slack jawed Scottish bloke stood next to me in his White album T-shirt turned to our companions & exclaimed "Do you KNOW who that is? That's Ringo ****ing Starr!!", then looked amazed at each other & laughed for about 5 minutes.... I really couldn't believe it & neither could he. That Ringo Starr was 20 feet away I mean. 8-)
~ Paul Kindred (32),
South Wales, U.K.
Aug. 25 - Moscow, Russia
For 30 years it was a dream of Russian Beatle
fans to see them live. And it seemed that it will never happen. But... Ringo
spent in Moscow 32 hours. And he gave this amazing concert. I came to Moscow
from Perm to see this concert. A few times I thought that I'd be disappointed
but I wasn't disappointed at all!
At least half of the audience was at the age of 15-30. And Ringo mentioned it before, at a press-conference. He was surprised. And me, too. There were no vacant seats in the hall (at least, I didn't find any). The audience gave Ringo a long ovation as he ran onto the stage and started singing 'It Don't Come Easy'. Ringo was in a good mood and surely he was in a great form! I would never say that this man is 58! I would think that he is 30-35, no more! During the whole evening Ringo talked to the audience. He joked a lot. When he saw the big heart with a
"We love you, Ringo" sign on it, he said: "Yeah, I saw your sign. Thank you. I love you too!" He waved to the people on balconys and really tried to talk to the audience. When the band returned to play 'With A Little Help From My Friends' the whole audience stood up and sang the
song with Ringo (the same happened during 'Yellow Submarine'). And I'm sure Ringo will remember this concert in Russia for a long time. I think he didn't expect such a warm welcome. I read after it that he didn't get such welcome in St. Petersburg next day. But it was great in Moscow! I hope Ringo will return to Russia someday with this All Starr Band, because it is surely Ringo's best band in years!
To be honest, I would like to see more Ringo in this concert than his band (they sang 12 songs and Ringo sang only 11!!!) and I'm sure most of the fans came to see Ringo, not any member of his band, though Frampton, Brooker, Bruce and Kirke sang wonderful songs, well-known and loved. And one more thing: I was surprised when Ringo, introducing the song 'Love Me Do' (by the way, he performed only two songs from 'Vertical Man', one of which wasn't very new) he said: "This is the song by another group I was in. And it is on my new album 'Vertical Man'".
So, that was a wonderful, a fantastic evening, August, 25! I will never forget it! RINGO, come back soon!!!!
~ Peter Sheshukov,
It was the first concert of any of the Fab
Four in Russia. It was a great show, the best show weve ever been
to. And we really had much fun, as everybody around us did . . . and Ringo
seemed to be in a great mood. He played his usual set, and we sang along
almost every song, and we are not going to complain that there was only
one song from The Vertical Man (apart from "Love Me Do"), because
(a) that one was our favorite "La De Da," (b) theres too
much complaint on that on the net, and (c) it was their set, that was how
they played it for us, and it was a lot of fun at the end of the day.
We dont have much to say on the other members of the band (probably, our dad could, but he left the town that day), but they made a great sound, and the audience was very enthusiastic about them. There were those guys with a big poster, saying JACK, YOU ARE THE CREAM OF THE BAND, obviously, to cheer up Jack Bruce. There were also many other posters.
The audience seemed also very well-prepared and very competent. When Ringo once stopped to announce the next song and he went like: «This next song is gonna be ...», someone of the audience cried out: "I Wanna Be Your Ma-a-a-an". Ringo seemed to be very pleased, as he smiled and completed proudly "I Wanna Be Your Man," and he played it.
We noticed many people around singing "No No Song" (also one of our favorites) and "Love Me Do," and, of course, everybody around sang "Yellow Submarine." The guys in the first row had a huge yellow submarine drawing. Ringo took that one from them on stage and showed it so that everybody could see and gave it back to the guys then.
A funny thing is that we heard of at least five different groups of people claiming that it was them who were those happy ones with the yellow submarine at the show, who, together with Ringo, created that Moscow yellow-submarine episode.
Ringo also had some words written on a sheet of paper in Russian. And it was funny, as well, as he said very slowly at the very beginning of the show in Russian, reading it from his sheet: Thanks (applause). Then: Hello (storm of applause). And then, suddenly, as if he took a wrong sheet of paper: Bye (everybody went: Nooooooooo). Then, he tried to speak as slowly as he could, but then, as the show went on, he a sort of forgot that not so many people around can understand English, and began to speak really quickly.
When the regular set was over, the band left the stage, we continued to shout and sing calling them back. So, guess what they played for the encore -- Right, it was "With a Little Help From My Friends." And that was when everybody went absolutely mad. We are proud to say that even our mom was singing loud.
~ Dasha and Lida (twins, ages 12)
Aug. 26 - St. Petersburg, Russia
This was the first visit of a former Beatle
in the former Soviet Union. To my great surprise, just at the beginning
of the show at least 20% of the seats were vacant. That means that were
not more than 3.000 people in the hall designed for. 3.700 viewers. A newspaper
report said that only 1.500 tickets were sold. There is an explanation for
this, I think. The ticket cost was extremely high by Russian standards:
USD 48 to 150 dollars (the average monthly salary here is USD 100 to 170).
I am very sorry to mention this, but this is the reality in which the concert
had to take place. That meant that normal rock concert goers couldnt
afford to see Ringo, and, consequently, the atmosphere of the concert was
not as not as warm and joyful as it could have been.
As it is noted in the tour schedule on your site, it was planned that Ringo and the band would play in large sports halls (both In Moscow and St. Petersburg), but for some reason the organizers of the Russian concerts changed their plans.There was only a small group of people in front of the stage that danced, sang and cheered Ringo. And only at the last song (With A Little Help Of My Friends) the audience, thank God, stood up and applauded.
Ringo played the set of songs he normally plays on this tour (according to other tour reviews). He started with It Dont Come Easy, sang one more song and gave the floor to the other musicians who played and sang 12(!) songs in total. I enjoyed very much the performance of all four great musicians, but, to be honest, I would prefer to see this in a separate show. That was also the opinion of the most newspaper reviewers I read, although some of them noted that the bands members in some respect looked in preference to Ringo.
Thats too bad that he played only two songs from his latest album, and one of them was a remake of the Beatles song (Love Me Do). I dont understand why he doesnt play Octopuss Garden which might be considered Ringos symbol along with Yellow Submarine.
Still it was a historic event for me and Russian Beatles fans! It also should be noted that according to reports on TV and in newspapers the audience in Moscow was more lively and loud (probably, Moscow nouveau rich have more fun!).
~ Dmitri Fedotenko
Aug. 28 - Monaco
The tickets for the show in Monaco,where
Ringo was to play three nights,were very
expensive:420 Francs,about 70 $.For that price you get a free drink!The All-Starr band was to play at the Sporting Club, in a hall called appropriately "Salle des Etoiles" ("Stars room").This was an extremely posh place (on the ticket it was written that we had to come with tie and
jacket).It looked a bit like a restaurant and the mood was not really a rock'n' roll one.Before Ringo went on,there was an orchestra playing things like the "Love boat" theme; you get the picture.
Finally he came!We were only a handful of "real" Ringo fans,and we were the only ones
shouting,the rest of the audience was only clapping politely.When Ringo introduced "La De Da" he said as a joke:"As you all know, I've got a new album called Vertical man...(Silence) Well,as you three know..." Jack Bruce's amplifier kept breaking down during the song.
Gary Brooker had a big success when he sang "A Whiter Shade of Pale."
After "Yellow Submarine," where we (the fans) shouted like mad, Ringo said,laughingly:"Usually we run off at this point but I don't think we will tonight,cause they may not bring us back!" Then he sang "With a Little Help From My Friends," and away he went.
He had only sung 8 songs, but that was fantastic anyway! Big fireworks were let off then, but we didn't care and immediatly went at the artists' exit! And after long,long minutes, Ringo came out.We were a dozen excited fans,so Ringo said "No pushing!",and he signed autographs to almost everyone, including me (HURRAH!) I told him twice that his last album was great (as good as "Ringo",actually) but I don't know if he heard me.Then he went away to his home, only a yard away...
Thank you Ringo for this show, for your autograph and for everything!
~ Yann Darson
(member of the "Club du Sgt.Pepper," French Beatles fan club).
Sept. 3 - Bonn
I went to the concert in Boston MA, Harborlights
5 June 1997; London England, Shepherds Bush 21 August 1998; Hamburg Germany,
2 September 1998; and Bonn Germany, Ausstellungshalle 3 September 1998.
I also have a CD of the show in Leuven,Belgium 16 August 1998.
All shows were fantastic. However, the show in Bonn the band was most energized. Since this was the next to last show -- as Boston was at the end of the tour in 1997 -- I was expecting a slower more relaxed concert. Before the band came out every time someone would walk on stage to do a "check" the audience surged forward and the ones in the back would jump to see who was there. Everyone was screaming "Ringo,Ringo". This went on till about 7:30pm and then the band came on.
As in all the shows the set list was pretty much the same with a few exceptions in each show, Gary Brooker doing "Whiskey Train Vs Devil from Kansas", omitting "Conquistador," to not doing "White Shade of Pale" or "You're Sixteen" and adding from "Vertical Man" the songs of "Love Me Do" and "La De Da".
The only disappointment was that at all the shows I was at for 1998 they did not sell Tee-Shirts or merchandise.
~ Christine M McIntyre
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Page last updated Sept. 20, 1998.