Ringo Starr accepts honorary doctorate from Berklee College of Music via virtual speech: “I’m a doctor at last”

ABC/Randy Holmes

On Saturday, Ringo Starr was presented with an honorary doctorate by Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music as part of the renowned school’s 2022 commencement festivities.

The former Beatles drummer was not in attendance at the event, but accepted the honor virtually via a pre-recorded video.

“I send you all peace and love, everybody,” Ringo began his speech. “I’m sorry I can’t be with you today in person, but I do want to congratulate the Class of 2022, yeah! Well done, graduates. And I want to thank you for the honorary doctorate degree. I’m a doctor at last.”

The 81-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer continued, “I never went to college, but I certainly have had a lot of experience making music, so I suppose I earned this in my own way.”

Starr then noted the great experiences he playing with different bands, including his early group Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, followed by The Beatles, and then his current All Starr Band.

Ringo concluded his speech by saying, “If I could wish anything for you, it would be that the passion and love that you have for making music…continues to guide you through wherever your career takes you next. It’s great when the success happens, and Berklee students have seen a lot of it…but it’s important to remember that’s not what this is all about. For each of us, it started with a dream to play music. And may your dream keep unfolding for you, as it has for me.”

Also receiving honorary doctorates from Berklee on Saturay were R&B singer and Berklee alumna Lalah Hathaway, award-winning composer and producer James Newton Howard, and acclaimed bass player Chuck Rainey.

For more details about Berklee’s 2022 commencement event, visit Berklee.edu.

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