Going Down The 20 Post-Beatles Member Collab Songs
After their breakup, each member of The Beatles went on to pursue successful solo careers. But even as they embarked on solo tours and released solo studio efforts, they remained buddies. And so while fans would’ve loved to see the four of them reunited for even just one song, it didn’t happen. But we did get the next best thing – partial reunion in several releases particularly from drummer Ringo Starr.
Here are their best collaborations:
20. Ringo Starr – “King of Broken Hearts”
For his 11th studio album, Starr enlisted the help of his musician friends like Ozzy Osbourne, Brian Wilson, Tom Petty, Scott Weiland, Joe Walsh, and Steven Tyler. George Harrison joined Starr on “King of Broken Hearts” to play the slide guitar.
19. John Lennon – “Gimme Some Truth”
A protest song, Lennon began working on it as early as January 1969 for their “Let It Be” sessions. He recorded it with Harrison on slide guitar.
18. John Lennon – “Mother”
This song is partly about Lennon’s parents – his father abandoned him when he was just a baby while his mother did not live with him. Lennon once introduced this in concert saying that it’s “about 99% of the parents, alive or half dead.” It featured Starr on drums.
17. George Harrison – “So Sad”
He enlisted Starr’s help for the drum duties and Harrison wrote it about his failed marriage to Pattie Boyd. He said, “I like this song a lot as a melody and lyrically, except the only problem is it’s depressing. It is so sad. It was at the time I was splitting up with Pattie.”
16. Paul McCartney – “Not Such a Bad Boy”
Starr joined him for this track from McCartney’s fifth solo studio album.
15. Paul McCartney – “Beautiful Night”
Originally recorded in New York City in August 1986, Starr provided the drums and backing vocals. He even appeared on the music video.
14. John Lennon – “How Do You Sleep?”
Lennon famously attacked McCartney with this song from his “Imagine” album. Lennon later clarified, “It’s not about Paul, it’s about me. I’m really attacking myself. But I regret the association, well, what’s to regret? He lived through it. The only thing that matters is how he and I feel about these things and not what the writer or commentator thinks about it. Him and me are okay.” Harrison played the slide guitar.
13. Paul McCartney – “Wanderlust”
With Starr on drums, McCartney belted out his best vocal performance of all time and even producer George Martin was captivated.
12. George Harrison – “All Those Years Ago”
Aside from Starr on drums, this also featured Paul McCartney and his wife Linda providing the backing vocals. This served as their tribute to John Lennon who was murdered a few months prior. Harrison originally wrote the lyrics for Ringo but after the news of Lennon’s death, Harrison rewrote the song.
11. The Beatles – “Real Love”
Lennon recorded six demos but over a decade after his death, his former bandmates got together to complete the song for the Beatles Anthology project. McCartney recalled, “Yoko said “I’ve got a couple of tracks I’ll play you, you might be interested”. I’d never heard them before but she explained that they’re quite well known to Lennon fans as bootlegs. I said to Yoko, “Don’t impose too many conditions on us, it’s really difficult to do this, spiritually. We don’t know, we may hate each other after two hours in the studio and just walk out. So don’t put any conditions, it’s tough enough. If it doesn’t work out, you can veto it.” When I told George and Ringo I’d agreed to that, they were going, “What? What if we love it?” It didn’t come to that, luckily.”
10. George Harrison – “Wreck of the Hesperus”
With Starr on drums, his other rocker friends Eric Clapton (electric guitar) and Elton John (piano) joined him during recording.
9. George Harrison – “My Sweet Lord”
Starr once again sat behind the kit and joined Harrison for this masterpiece.
8. Ringo Starr – “Photograph”
Harrison co-wrote the song, played the 12-string acoustic guitar, and provided backing vocals.
7. Ringo Starr – “I’m The Greatest”
Lennon played the piano and added backing vocals while Harrison took over the guitar duties. According to Lennon, “It’s the Muhammad Ali line, you know. I couldn’t sing it, but it was perfect for Ringo. He could say ‘I’m the greatest’ and people wouldn’t get upset. Whereas if I said ‘I’m the greatest,’ they’d all take it so seriously.”
6. John Lennon – “I Found Out”
Lennon didn’t hold back as he dragged religion, his parents, drugs, and even McCartney with the lyrics. Starr played the drums.
5. Ringo Starr – “It Don’t Come Easy”
With Harrison on guitar, it was Starr’s first single following The Beatles breakup. Harrison also helped with the lyrics but Starr received the sole songwriting credit.
4. Paul McCartney – “Take It Away”
McCartney recruited Starr on drums and George Martin on electric piano.
3. George Harrison – “Beware of Darkness”
Starr’s behind the kit on this ballad while Eric Clapton plays the lead guitar.
2. John Lennon – “Instant Karma”
Harrison contributed backing vocals and played electric guitar and piano on Lennon’s classic hit. He wrote and recorded it in just a day. He told Rolling Stone, “I wrote it in the morning on the piano. I went to the office and sang it many times. So I said ‘Hell, let’s do it,’ and we booked the studio, and Phil came in, and said, ‘How do you want it?’ I said, ‘You know, 1950’s.’ He said, ‘right,’ and boom, I did it in about three goes or something like that. I went in and he played it back and there it was. The only argument was that I said a bit more bass, that’s all; and off we went.”
1. George Harrison – “When We Was Fab”
It’s one of his most famous songs with Starr on drums and backing vocals. As to the music video, there were rumors that McCartney was the one in the walrus suit. Although Harrison confirmed it, McCartney later said that “George wanted me to be in it but I wasn’t available. So I suggested that he put someone else in the walrus and tell everyone that it was me.”