Ringo Starr Slams “Bulls***” Rumors that AI Was Used to Help Create New Beatles Single

In a new interview with AARP, Beatles drummer Ringo Starr addressed reports that artificial intelligence was used to recreate the late John Lennon’s voice for the recently released Fab Four track “Now and Then.” Starr insisted that a computer was not responsible for generating the late Lennon’s vocals.

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“We had a great track of John singing and playing piano and George [Harrison] playing rhythm guitar,” the 83-year-old rock legend noted. “There were terrible rumors that it’s not John, it’s AI, whatever bulls*** people said. Paul [McCartney] and I would not have done that.”

[RELATED: Ringo Starr Calls Beatles Single Being No. 1 “Incredible”]

As previously reported, “Now and Then” was created using a demo that Lennon recorded on a cassette in 1978. Starr, McCartney, and Harrison added parts to the demo during the mid-1990s before shelving the song because the quality of Lennon’s vocals could not be separated from his piano adequately. Thanks to modern audio technology developed by director Peter Jackson’s creative team and utilized during the making of the 2021 docuseries, The Beatles: Get Back, Lennon’s vocals were finally cleanly lifted from the cassette, and Starr and McCartney then recorded some new parts help to finish the song.

“Last year, Paul called and said, ‘You remember that unfinished song of John’s, ‘Now and Then’? Why don’t we work on that?’” Starr explained to AARP. “He sent it to me, and I played the drums and sang.”

“Now and Then” was released earlier this month, and is being billed as “the last Beatles song.”

“It’s a beautiful song and a nice way to finally close that door,” Starr said.

Meanwhile, McCartney recently wrote a song for Starr called “Feeling the Sunlight” that’s featured on Ringo’s 2023 EP, Rewind Forward. Sir Paul also sang and played bass on the track. It wasn’t the first time that Starr’s Beatles bandmates had written songs for him to sing, and Starr noted that those tunes helped him enjoy an enduring career as a frontman long after the Fab Four broke up.

“I used to be a rock drummer, and then they ruined my whole career,” he said with a laugh. “‘With a Little Help [from My Friends]’ and ‘Yellow Submarine’ are the reasons I’m onstage every night.”

When the AARP interviewer suggested that writing someone a song “was pretty big act of love,” Starr agreed.

“Yeah, they know me,” he said. “Paul loves me as much as I love him. He’s the brother I never had. As an only child, suddenly I got three brothers. We looked out for each other.”

Reflecting on his time with The Beatles, Starr was amazed at what the group accomplished in such a relatively short period of time.

“I was 22 when I joined the Beatles in 1962, and I was 30 when it was all over,” he pointed out. “We did eight years, and look at how much we packed in.”

“Now and Then” is available now in digital and physical formats. It also appears on the recently released expanded reissue of The Beatles’ 1967-1970 compilation, also known as “The Blue Album.”

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