We still see an endless stream of Beatles material and just this month the album Let It Be – Naked was finally available as a digital download. Not to be confused with their last ever album from 1970 remember this was a CD release with remixed sections and orchestral parts removed as these had been the vision of Phil Spector and not met with universal approval at the time. Official biographer Hunter Davies recent publication The John Lennon Letters ( W&N, £25.00), has private mailings after years spent collecting from every possible source. It has been a huge undertaking as we can see not only letters but postcards, scribbles and even shopping lists (well you would keep a hand written shopping list if it came from a Beatle wouldn’t you?) Lennon was a prolific writer too and commented on events as well as just sending loving notes back home to his relatives. His letters from Hamburg are here and so are his last autographs with sketches on the day he died. For many this gives a further insight to John the relative, musician, activist and peacemaker.
Meantime his old mucker on drums continues to tour and from his 2012 tour comes Ringo At The Ryman (UMC), a DVD of the full show. The All Starr Band all get their moment on stage and as Ringo fleshes out his set with known original hits they get a kick out of sharing the stage with a living Beatle. Ringo has the place rocking with hits It Don’t Come Easy, Photograph, the big singalong Yellow Submarine and his old live favourite Boys. Being at the original home of Country music Buck Owens’ Act Naturally features near the end but the audience go wild for guest Joe Walsh who reprises his Rocky Mountain Way in full. Todd Rundgren gives a passible I Saw The Light and with members of Toto, Santana and Mister Mister in the band authentic hits are non stop. The big finish is of course an all star With A Little Help From My Friends with guests and nothing could follow that.