Ringo Starr Says Playing on John Lennon’s ‘Plastic Ono Band’ Was a Career Highlight
John Lennon’s Plastic Ono Band, his first effort after the breakup of the Beatles, was an emotionally harrowing and cathartic for the singer. But for Ringo Starr, who played drums on it, the album is also a professional high point, as he explains in a new interview.
“It’s one of the best experiences of being on a record I have ever had,” he told Uncut. “Just being in the room with John, being honest, the way he was, screaming, shouting and singing. It was an incredible moment.”
After the more heavily orchestrated and overdubbed works of the late-Beatles period, Lennon stripped back his sound for Plastic Ono Band, bringing in Ringo on drums and Klaus Voormann on bass. The association with Voormann, who created the cover for Revolver, stretched back to their Hamburg days, and Starr feels that the three of them had a chemistry that couldn’t be topped.
“John, Klaus and I,” he added. “One of the finest trios I ever heard. We did it like a jam. We knew John had the songs and we’d kick it in and felt where it should go. We knew Klaus anyway. John and I really knew each other, so we were psychic where the atmosphere was going to go.”
Starr’s quotes continue a mutual public lovefest between himself and Lennon. Last month, Yoko Ono said that Ringo was the “most influential Beatle,” because his temperament best reflected the group’s message. “John would go up and down and all that, but Ringo was always just very gentle [...] He just sort of embodies peace and love.”
See the Beatles and Other Rockers in the Top 100 Albums of the '60s
You Think You Know the Beatles?