Beatles Legend Ringo Starr Credits Fellow Music Icon for Inspiring Him To Go Country

While the drummer for the Beatles, Ringo Starr was far more than just a musician as he performed songs like “With a Little Help from My Friends” and “Yellow Submarine.” He also wrote songs for the band, including “Octopus’s Garden” and “Don’t Pass Me By.” As for his solo career, Starr proved his musical talent by releasing 20 studio albums, with his last, What’s My Name, hitting shelves back in 2019. But recently, Starr opened up about his decision to go country and how country icon T Bone Burnett helped inspire him. 

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Recalling how the pair constantly ran into each other over the decades, Starr explained to Fox News Digital, “I met him [when] Olivia Harrison was reading poems for George. There was about 100 of us there listening, and he was one of them, and I bumped into him [off and on] since the ’70s.” Starr added, “He said, ‘What are you doing? I said, ‘Oh, well I’m doing this, EPs [extended play albums, which have more tracks than a single, but less than a record]. I’m getting people to write a song, put some music on it.”

Although exploring the possibility of releasing more pop songs, Starr changed his mind as he insisted Burnett’s song to be “absolutely one of the most beautiful country songs I ever heard. So, I thought, ‘I’m going to do a country EP.’” With nine more songs revolving around country, the musician said, “I thought let’s make a real CD, so I’m back making a CD.”

[RELATED: 4 Songs for People Who Say They Don’t Like Ringo Starr]

Ringo Starr Gains Praise From T Bone Burnett

Outside of praising Burnett, Starr also gained high praise from the country legend. He told Variety, “He’s such a beautiful singer. Ringo was in a band with two of the best singers in rock ‘n’ roll history, so people never took him as seriously as a singer as they should.” Burnett continued, “If you listen to all the country stuff he did, ‘What Goes On’ and ‘Act Naturally’ and ‘Honey Don’t,’ he did so much great country music, even in the Beatles. And, you know, he’s called Ringo Starr because that’s a cowboy name, and he wanted to be a cowboy when he was a kid.” 

And much like Starr, Burnett found no better place than country music. “I mean, Ringo in his third act is deserving of a serious album. … I want to make a classic Ringo Starr country record.” For those wondering if Starr could embrace country music, during the 1970s, he released his album Beaucoups of Blues, which featured heavy influence from country.

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