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The Guitar Train Stops to Have Brunch with The Beatles (Not Really)

 

B.B. King Blues Club

A few months ago, Quirky T stopped the Guitar Train to see a great Beatles cover band called Strawberry Fields. They perform every Saturday at 12 pm at The Beatles Brunch at B.B. King Blues Club and Grill in New York City. (www.bbkingblues.com) The price of admission includes an all-you-can-eat brunch buffet and the band’s performance. The cover band has been playing at this venue for 15 years. They don’t necessarily look the parts but they do act them. Except the Paul McCartney impersonator who kept going in and out of character which was confusing. It was hard to know when he was taking about his own life and when he was being Paul.

 

photo by Luis Dominguez

photo by Luis Dominguez

Strawberry Fields played 22 songs spanning The Beatles catalogue including more cover songs than usual for a Beatles tribute band. Beatles originals that were a pleasant surprise to hear were “I Call Your Name”, “I’ve Just Seen a Face”, and “Thank You Girl”. I thought the band did a great job and I really enjoyed the performance. For more information on the band, check out http://www.strawberryfieldsthetribute.com

 

photo by Luis Dominguez

photo by Luis Dominguez

There’s always an element of sadness when listening to a Beatles cover band and especially the banter among the performers. The real Beatles never played some of the songs live that their tribute bands play now. The real Beatles never had the onstage banter about their later songs. Instead of “Things We Said Today”, it’s “Things They Never Got to Say”.

Beatles exhibit program

 

After the concert, I headed to The Beatles exhibit at Lincoln Center which “Paul” had talked about between songs. It was a great exhibit which I have already mentioned in a previous Guitar Train stop.

https://guitartrain.wordpress.com/2014/04/03/off-the-music-track-month-stop-1-paper-towel-craziness/

What struck me was that I just paid more money to see a Beatles cover band than fans paid in 1964 to see the real Beatles in concert! Times and money sure have changed but The Beatles will remain forever.

 

Next month, hop aboard the Guitar Train for stops to listen to the Standards as sung by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Quirky T’s favorites – Paul McCartney, Gloria Estefan, and Jon Secada.

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The Guitar Train Stops to Listen to Ringo Starr Songs

 

Y Not CD cover

This stop on The Guitar Train, Quirky T listens to the post Beatles solo work of Ringo Starr. I only began to listen to Ringo’s solo albums in 2010 with his CD, “Y Not” I have never seen him in concert with his All-Starr Band. I think that band is a great idea but there were never any other performers I liked enough to make it worth it to me to pay so much to hear Ringo sing five songs – “With A Little Help From My Friends”, “Yellow Submarine”, “Octopus’s Garden”, “Photograph”, and “It Don’t Come Easy”.

 

I’m impressed that Ringo is still making original music and touring. Being dubbed the least talented of The Beatles hasn’t stopped him from co-writing and producing new music pretty regularly. I would think once you’re happily married, very rich, and hugely successful, you wouldn’t have much to write about, complain about, or yearn for but Ringo does. He still wants peace and love.

 

Liverpool - Ringo's street

Ringo’s Street in Liverpool

As with John Lennon’s solo songs, I was surprised by how personal and autobiographical Ringo’s songs are. The song “Liverpool 8” http://youtu.be/OM34giD4o4w  from the 2008 CD of the same name is a chronological retelling of Ringo’s life in relation to his music and his hometown of Liverpool.  “The Other Side of Liverpool” from 2010’s “Y Not” and “In Liverpool” from Ringo’s 2012 CD, “Ringo 2012” also depict his hometown.

Ringo CD cover

 

Again as with John’s songs, I liked hearing the songs I was already familiar with such as the songs on “Photograph: The Very Best of Ringo Starr”. The song “Photograph” itself is surprisingly up-tempo for a sad song about a loved one not returning. Ringo’s songs seem to span several genres such as pop, country, and Spanish influenced. His rhymes are a little too easy and I wish at times they were more inventive and less trite. As a whole, I enjoyed Ringo Starr’s solo songs and I would listen to them again.

 

Guitar Train passengers, what are your favorite post Beatles Ringo Starr song and album?

 

On our next trip, The Guitar Train will stop to listen to a Beatles cover band, Strawberry Fields, who perform every Saturday at B.B. King Blues Club in New York City.

 

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