Earlier this month, the Fab Four released Now And Then, billed as the “final Beatles record”, which wound up giving the group their first UK number one single in more than 50 years.
Now And Then was based on a demo recorded by John Lennon in the late 1970s, and featured previously-recorded contributions from the late George Harrison, as well as newly-recorded parts by both Ringo and his bandmate Paul McCartney.
While AI technology was used to help separate John’s vocals on the original recording, Ringo has shut down speculation that it’s not the Imagine singer’s voice on the finished product.
“There were terrible rumours that it’s not John, it’s AI, whatever bullshi t people said,” he told AARP.
“Paul and I would not have done that. It’s a beautiful song and a nice way to finally close that door.”
Paul previously insisted on X (formerly known as Twitter) before the song’s release: “To be clear, nothing has been artificially or synthetically created. It’s all real and we all play on it. We cleaned up some existing recordings – a process which has gone on for years.”
Beatles bandmates Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison first tried to build a song around John’s Now And Then demo in the 1990s, around the time they put together Beatles tracks like Real Love and Free As A Bird.
However, they initially discarded these plans due to the poor quality of John’s recording. George’s guitar tracks recorded during these sessions were used on the version of Now And Then that was released this month.
While the song proved popular commercially, it received a somewhat mixed reception from critics when it was first unveiled.
This article has been updated to amend a spelling error.