Sunday, May 20, 2018
News Roundup

Ringo Starr and friends, including Todd Rundgren and Gregg Rolie, come to Ruth Eckerd on July 1

CLEARWATER — Most fireworks displays are Wednesday, but in the meantime, blow your mind with the music of your youth as Ringo Starr & His 13th All Starr Band rock the stage Sunday night at Ruth Eckerd Hall.

It will be the fourth time the Beatle has entertained at the Clearwater venue.

"Ringo has a lot of fun doing this tour," said Bobby Rossi, chief programming officer for Ruth Eckerd Hall. "It helps keep him young. It's a party with the kids and grandkids, and he doesn't let them down."

Starr will turn 72 on July 7, but he's as hip as ever and has assembled a great entourage of musical talent for this summer's tour, including Steve Lukather (Toto), Gregg Rolie (Santana and Journey), Richard Page (Mr. Mister), Todd Rundgren, Mark Rivera and Gregg Bissonette.

The show will feature a medley of Beatle songs including hits like It Don't Come Easy, Photograph, A Little Help From My Friends and Yellow Submarine as well as Toto's Rosanna, Mr. Mister's Broken Wings, Rundgren's Hello It's Me and Santana's Black Magic Woman.

The folks at Ruth Eckerd Hall think so much of the legendary Beatle who provided the beat for arguably the most influential rock band of the 20th century that they named one of their newly renovated suites after him.

"He was really flattered about that," said Rossi.

The suite is filled with photos of Starr and bears his signature on the door plaque.

Which leads to the next item: Several years ago, Starr announced that he would no longer sign autographs. Apparently, he was too busy, irritated with eBay hawkers and concerned about the environment (he didn't want fans to waste paper sending him fan mail).

But don't fret.

His pop art— computer creations of cartoonlike faces, peace signs and other psychedelia — will be for sale in the lobby. Many are autographed.

Computer painting is a hobby Starr took up in the '90s. He has said it helped him pass time while on the long and winding road. The result is a fairly primitive look that is fun, bright and comical in a Beatles-ish sort of way.

Proceeds from the sale of the serigraphs, giclees and drum heads help fund Starr's charity, the Lotus Foundation, which supports social and environmental causes.

Right now, Ringo is helping to save the rhinos.

Reach Terri Bryce Reeves at [email protected]

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