By Kim Palmer
CLEVELAND (Reuters) - Former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr was set on Saturday to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist by onetime band mate Paul McCartney as part of a ceremony in Cleveland celebrating some of the biggest stars of rock music.
Among the 2015 inductees joining Starr, a Hall member since 1988 as a part of the Beatles, will be singer Bill Withers, punk-pop band Green Day and Lou Reed, the primary force behind the Velvet Underground who was among the most influential rock musicians in history.
The event, which sold out in minutes and is slated to air on HBO on May 30, marks the 20th anniversary of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, where the ceremony is being held, and the 30th induction ceremony.
Performers scheduled to appear include Beck, Foo Fighters' front man Dave Grohl and former Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello.
Inducting Withers, who gained fame with the melancholy hit "Ain't No Sunshine" in 1971, will be pianist and singer Stevie Wonder, while the pioneering female rock musician Patti Smith will appear for her friend Reed, who died in 2013 of liver disease.
Also set to be inducted are Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, whose biggest hit, "I Love Rock 'n Roll," became a rock classic, by pop star Miley Cyrus, as well as the late blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, who will be honored by guitarist and singer John Mayer.
For his part, Starr, 74, has released 18 solo studio albums since the breakup of the Beatles, including his latest, "Postcards From Paradise," earlier this month.
Artists are eligible for induction 25 years after the release of their first record. Green Day was inducted in its first year of eligibility.
The ceremony is the fourth hosted by Cleveland, which most recently had the honor in 2012, with the event usually being held in Los Angeles or New York.
"When the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction is in Cleveland it is a huge event," said Rock Hall CEO Greg Harris.
(Editing by Jonathan Kaminsky, Bernard Orr)