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On Saturday night, Ringo Starr became the last of the four Beatles to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist when he was presented the Award for Musical Excellence by his friend and fellow former Beatle Paul McCartney.
"It's a great honor to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame," Starr said in his speech (read the full text at RollingStone.com). "I was doing the press and they're all saying, 'Well, why did you wait so long?' It has nothing to do with me. You have to be invited. But anyway, apparently I'm invited and I love it."
The other members of the Beatles already had both group and solo awards: John Lennon (posthumously given in 1994); McCartney (1999) and George Harrison (posthumously in 2004). The Beatles were inducted in 1988. Even Beatles producer George Martin got one (1999), as did their late manager Brian Epstein (2014).
McCartney got the process started for Starr's induction himself: "I talked to Bruce Springsteen and I talked to [Foo Fighters'] Dave Grohl, and they both said he should be in," McCartney told Rolling Stone. "And I said I'd do the induction. That took care of it."
"As all the other drummers say, he just is something so special," McCartney said at the induction ceremony. "When he's playing behind you, you see these other bands, they're looking around at the drummer, like, 'Is he going to speed up, is he going to slow down?' You don't have to look with Ringo."
In addition, other acts inducted on Saturday night included the Paul Butterfield Blues Band; The "5" Royales; Bill Withers; Green Day; Lou Reed; Joan Jett and the Blackhearts; and Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble.
But in a lot of ways, the night was Starr's. The evening even ended with an all-star version of The Beatles' "I Want to Be Your Man."