R is for Ringo, Ringo Starr. Of all the Beatles, Ringo is the hardest to pin down. He is a seemingly reluctant goof-ball who contributed much more to the Beatles than most people realize. What John, Paul, and George called “Ringoisms,” slight twists of speech, later became titles of hits – and even a famous movie. It was Ringo who coined the phrases A Hard Day’s Night and “Eight Days A Week.” Of all the Beatles, it was Ringo who went on to a work in movies and television. For a generation of kids, he will always be the original Mr. Conductor from Shining Time Station.
Born 7 July 1940 in Liverpool, England, Richard Starkey, MBE, also known as Ringo Starr, is the oldest of the four Beatles and the last to join the band. Before replacing Pete Best on drums and joining the Beatles, Ringo Starr performed with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. John Lennon once referred to Ringo as the seasoned professional of the group. While he somewhat meant that as a joke, during their formative years, it was Ringo who had the most experience.
While much has been made of Ringo’s supposed lack of technical skill as a drummer, he is now widely acknowledged as an innovative drummer who inspired many others, including Phil Collins of Genesis. Since 1989, Ringo has toured extensively with various incarnations of Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band. He is still touring and just released his latest album, Ringo 2012. He and Paul McCartney are now the sole surviving members of the Beatles.
Ringo’s career can largely be summed up in a September 1980 quote by John Lennon:
“Ringo was a star in his own right in Liverpool before we even met. He was a professional drummer who sang and performed and had Ringo Starr-time and he was in one of the top groups in Britain but especially in Liverpool before we even had a drummer. So Ringo’s talent would have come out one way or the other as something or other. I don’t know what he would have ended up as, but whatever that spark is in Ringo that we all know but can’t put our finger on — whether it is acting, drumming or singing I don’t know — there is something in him that is projectable and he would have surfaced with or without the Beatles. Ringo is a damn good drummer.”
And so he is.
- P is for Penny Lane (russelllindsey.wordpress.com)
- National News: The Beatles: Unseen photographs to be auctioned off (VIDEO/GALLERY) (coventrytelegraph.net)
- F is for Fab Four/For No One (russelllindsey.wordpress.com)
- J is for John Lennon (russelllindsey.wordpress.com)
- “Ringo’s Story,” by Danielle (arcrencreativewriting.wordpress.com)
- Ringo Starr Getting New Respect (incaunipocrit.wordpress.com)
- G is for George Harrison (russelllindsey.wordpress.com)
- Ringo Starr Announces New All Starr Band Line-Up, Tour Dates (rollingstone.com)
- Ringo Starr’s “Ringo 2012″ Album Available Today (myq105.radio.com)