Monday, December 20, 2010

With a Little Help From My Friends by The Beatles – ****

First released: 1967

Ringo is Billy Shears on "Sgt. Pepper" and dutifully sings this song, barely. It's also on "1967-1970" and 1999's "Yellow Submarine Songtrack". Time has been kind and Ringo sings it better live nowadays. Different live versions appear on "Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band Volume 2 Live From Montreux" in 1993, 2000’s "The Anthology…So Far", 2002’s "Ringo & His New All-Starr Band", 2003’s "Extended Versions", 2004’s "Tour 2003", the "Live 2006 album from 2008 and "Live at the Greek Theatre 2008" from 2010. Two performances (one subtitled "Reprise") bookend Ringo’s appearance on 1998’s "VH1 Storytellers". I also like the Prince’s Trust version in which Ringo says, “Just try it” after singing, “would you stand up and walk out on me?” On the 2007 "Live at Soundstage" album, Ringo sings it twice, alone and along with "It Don't Come Easy" as a medley.

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