Indiana Daily Student

Online only: Ringo Starr Photograph: Very Best of Ringo Starr Grade: C-

Ringo's a star, but definitely not "the Greatest"

When I heard that former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr was putting out a 20-song best-of album, it brought me back to a rhetorical question I asked when "Saturday Night Live: Best of Chris Rock" came out. What are they going to do for the other hour and twenty minutes?\nRingo is first and foremost an underrated drummer in the greatest band of all time. He is often talked about as the guy who was merely in the right place in the right time, but while he wasn't flashy like Keith Moon of The Who and didn't tear the house down like John Bonham of Led Zeppelin, he played his part quite well and The Beatles were lucky to have him.\nNow, when it comes to songwriting, Ringo not only fails in comparison to his former band members (who wouldn't?) but also fails in comparison to pretty much anyone. He has written one song I deem worthy of putting on my iPod and even the covers he chooses for his best-of album are, at times, laughably bad.\nMost of the songs are fine, easy listening soft rock with Ringo's charming voice, but there's no real substance to them. The deepest he gets is saying he doesn't drink whiskey or do coke anymore because they make him (and watch this rhyme) sleep on the floor and fail to reach the door. \nHis cover of "Hey Baby" (a song you don't know you know -- the lyrics are "Hey, baby … I wanna know if you'll be my girl" repeated incessantly) makes it painfully clear: Ringo belongs on the drums only. Why cover a song if you have less than nothing to add? His duet with Buck Owens on "Act Naturally" is almost as bad as the fact that Ringo's cover of it made it onto an early Beatles album.\nThe only song of note is the endearing "I'm the Greatest" in which Ringo sings of how, even when he doubted himself, people have been telling him his whole life how great he is, and how at 32, "all I want to do is boogaloo." \nFor all the Marge Simpsons of the world who grew up idolizing the big-nosed Beatle in the back, Boogaloo on. I personally wish he'd stick to the drums.

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