Goodnight Vienna

Goodnight Vienna

After the success of 1973’s Ringo, it was only natural a similar approach would be used for the follow-up. Again, Starr is joined by a superstar collection of friends from John Lennon to Elton John, Dr. John, Billy Preston, Robbie Robertson, Steve Cropper, and Harry Nilsson. Producer Richard Perry returns and gives things a suitable 1974 production with lots of supplemental choirs and backing arrangements to enhance Ringo, never an accomplished vocalist, with a little extra glitz. Lennon wrote the leadoff track, “(It’s All Da-Da-Down To) Goodnight Vienna,” while Allen Toussaint is covered with “Occapella,” and Hoyt Axton with the goofy “No No Song.” The Platters’ doo-wop classic “Only You” became a top ten hit, and Elton John and Bernie Taupin’s “Snookeroo” fits Ringo’s easygoing demeanor. If anything Starr’s solo career has a joyful, serendipitous quality, since few expected him to weather it alone so well. Starr had always been a brilliant complement to other people’s music. Here, he’s smart to keep in good company.

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