Ringo Starr gets by with a little help from his friends

Starr and his All-Starr Band played the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre in Victoria on Oct. 8

Originally published in CVV Magazine on October 14, 2015

It was all peace and love when ringo-1-300x200.jpgthe former Beatle played Victoria on Thursday.

At 75, the Fab Four drummer is still touring and playing with some of the greatest musicians in the world. His band on Thursday included former members of Toto, Santana, Mr. Mister, and Bread.                                                                                                                          (Photo by Dean Kaylan)         Starr came out flashing his signature peace sign and stayed up-front to sing “Matchbox,” his 1971 single “It Don’t Come Easy,” and “Island in the Sun,” from his latest release Postcards from Paradise.

The band then took turns introducing each other as Starr made his way back to the drum kit. First up was guitarist and solo artist Todd Rundgren, who sang his 1972 single “I Saw the Light” before handing it over to ex-Santana singer and keyboardist Greg Rolie, who played the Santana classic “Evil Ways.”

Toto guitarist Steve Luthaker took a solo, and before long the group had the whole stadium on its feet for a super-jam on Toto’s ‘80s pop hit “Rosanna.” From there, things didn’t slow down, with Richard Page taking over for Mr. Mister’s “Kyrie,” and then back to Rundgren, who played a set of timbales for “Bang The Drum All Day.”

“I’m going to show you what to do with these,” said Rundgren, with a sly glance back at the Beatles drummer. It was a perfect invitation for Starr to take center stage once again for the Beatles’ “Boys,” “Don’t Pass Me By,” and, of course, “Yellow Submarine,” the last of which culminated in a giant audience sing-along.

Barely 45 minutes into the show, Starr then left the stage for Santana’s “Black Magic Woman” before returning for “You’re Sixteen,” “I’m the Greatest,” and “Anthem.”

Highlights from the rest of the night included Luthaker’s face-melting fretwork on Toto hits “Africa,” and “Hold the Line,” the groovy jam of Santana’s “Oye Como Va,” and Starr’s performances on “I Wanna Be Your Man,” “Photograph,” and “Act Naturally,” as well as Rundgren’s “Love is the Answer,” which Starr declared one of his favourites.

The group ended the show with the Sgt. Peppers classic “With a Little Help From My Friends” and a brief snippet of “Give Peace a Chance” in honour of John Lennon’s 75th birthday.

It was a great night and historic for Vancouver Island as Starr is now the first and only Beatle to have played Victoria.

Check out the full set list below:

1. Matchbox

2. It Don’t Come Easy

3. Island in the Sun

4. I Saw the Light

5. Evil Ways

6. Rosanna

7. Kyrie

8. Bang the Drum All Day

9. Boys

10. Don’t Pass Me By

11.Yellow Submarine

12. Black Magic Woman

13. You’re Sixteen

14. I’m the Greatest

15. Anthem

16. You Are Mine

17. Africa

18. Oye Como Va

19. I Wanna Be Your Man

20. Love is the Answer

21. Broken Wings

22. Hold the Line

23. Photograph

24. Act Naturally

25. With a Little Help From My Friends

26. Give Peace a Chance