Ringo Starr has been one of the biggest names in drumming world-wide for 60 years. For the last 34 years Ringo has been touring with his All-Starr band. The All Starrs played the Toyota Arena in Ontario, CA on September 17th. As of last year the band has been Toto’s Steve Lukather on lead guitar and vocals (Since 2012) former David Lee Roth and ELO drummer Gregg Bissonette who has been a member (since 2008). Woodwinds and percussionist Warren Ham who also a touring member with Toto (Since 2014), Average White Bands Hamish Stuart on bass and vocals (2006-2008 and again since 2019), Men at Work’s Colin Hay on guitar and vocals (2003, 2008, and again since 2018), and Edgar Winter rejointed last year on vocals, keys, and saxophone after being a member 2006-2011.
To join the All Starr band you are hand picked by Ringo himself and need to have had several charting hits and be able to sing and play an instrument. Since I’ve been seeing the All Star band since 2012 the format of the show has been quite similar with the show with Ringo on vocals for the first three songs starting with Carl Perkins’ “Matchbox.” Starr always announces the third song as the only one written by Lennon, McCartney, & Starkey. On song four Ringo takes the drum seat on Edgar Winter’s “Free Ride” and lets his band play their hits then going back and forth between his member’s hits, solo hits, and Beatles’ hits. Lukather, Stuart, Hay, and Winter all perform three songs each from their own bands including “Rosanna,” “Land Down Under,” and “Pick Up the Pieces.” Half the set comes from their songs with the other half being Ringo and Beatles.
Starr steps off the stage and lets the band take over for “Cut the Cake” and “Frankenstein” which included a drum/percussion battle between Winter and Bissonette. Bissonette also added in parts of Queen’s “We Will Rock You,” The Beatles “Come Together,” “The End,” and “Ticket to Ride,” The Safaris’ “Wipe Out,” Rush’s YYZ,” Led Zeppelin’s “Rock N’ Roll” and “Immigrant Song,” Van Halen’s “Hot For Teacher,” and The Rolling Stone’s “Honky Tonk Woman.” Starr returned for “Octopus’s Garden.”
As always the show ended with “With a Little Help From My Friends” combined with “Give Peace A Chance.”
Words and photos by Alex Kluft