Ringo Starr to Receive Knighthood

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Soon, it’ll be Sir Ringo. 53 years after receiving an MBE in 1965 (with his fellow Beatles), Ringo Starr has been selected to be knighted. The honor, “for services to music and charity,” which the U.K. newspaper The Sun revealed in its early editions on Sunday (Dec. 24), will be formally announced next week when Buckingham Palace announces Queen Elizabeth II’s New Years Honours. No specific date for the 2018 ceremony was mentioned.

The newspaper quotes fellow Beatle Paul McCartney as having urged the Queen: “Look, love it’s about time.” Starr turned 77 on July 7, 2017.

The legend will thus join McCartney who was similarly honored in 1997. Neither John Lennon nor George Harrison received knighthood. All four received their MBE honors simultaneously. MBE stands for Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, for contributions to the arts and sciences.

As The Beatles’ website notes: “The Beatles visited Buckingham Palace to receive their MBE medals from the Queen on October 26, 1965; two years later they wore them for the album cover photograph of Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Four years later John returned his in protest at British involvement in the Biafran war, Vietnam and ‘against Cold Turkey slipping down the charts’.”

Other British music stars who have been knighted over the years include Elton JohnMick JaggerTom JonesVan MorrisonRod Stewart (in a 2016 ceremony) and the Kinks’ Ray Davies who received the formal honors in 2017.

The Beatles released the remastered video for “Yellow Submarine,” one of Ringo’s signature lead vocals, to their Vevo channel on Dec. 15.

The beloved singer and drummer also sang lead vocals on such Beatles recordings as “Octopus’s Garden,” “Matchbox,” “I Wanna Be Your Man,” “With a Little Help From My Friends” and “Boys,” among others.

At 77, Starr is revving up for a busy 2018. On Nov. 29, he announced a European tour with his All Starr Band, his first dates on the continent since 2011. Continuing with the All Starr Band are Santana/Journey star Gregg Rolie, Toto’s Steve Lukather, Warren Ham and Gregg Bissonette. Also joining is 10cc co-founder Graham Gouldman and former Men At Work frontman Colin Hay.

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