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In 1989, former Beatle Ringo Starr had a brand new lease on life after spending much needed time away from the road, embracing sobriety wholeheartedly after a lengthy battle with alcoholism and refusing to allow himself to engage in any behavior that would further waste more of his precious time.
He celebrated by hitting the road again with Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band, an amalgam of the best and brightest the rock world had to offer that found Starr and his new bandmates performing songs from his solo career and time with The Beatles, as well as songs from their own catalogs for one hell of a live show that fans, for the life of them, still can’t stop talking about.
Fun Fact: Written by Band member Robbie Robertson, “The Weight” has significantly influenced American popular music, having been listed as #41 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time published in 2004.
With a lineup that included The Band’s Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, and Rick Danko, it was only a matter of time before Starr’s All-Starr Band dusted off The Band’s 1968 classic “The Weight” and in true All-Starr fashion, it was a party from start to finish as everyone played a critical role in the song’s execution; Dr. John can be seen tackling the third verse normally sung by Levon Helm while Danko handles his usual “Crazy Chester” bit, and where the original version of “The Weight” was stellar in its simplicity, the addition of Clarence Clemons offering up a syrupy sax solo and the band’s three drummers and two keyboardists make not for a distraction, but for a once in a lifetime musical experience.
Check out Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band jamming The Band’s “The Weight” in the video below, but don’t be surprised if you don’t see Ringo much – in fact, see if you can spot him behind one of the many drum kits onstage!