Richard Lee Starkey (born 7 July 1940), also known as Ringo Starr, was the main drummer of The Beatles. He also had a successful solo career, and was nicknamed "the sad Beatle" or "the funny Beatle" due to his light and airy personality.
Ringo was born on July 7, 1940 to Elsie Starkey and Richard Starkey. Ringo's parents divorced when he was three years old, and he went to live with his mother. Starr was a sickly child because had many medical problems during childhood, and spent a lot of time in the hospital. In 1957, Ringo joined Rory Storm & the Hurricanes. It was during this time that Richard got the nickname "Ringo", due to the rings he always wore on his fingers. The band became very popular.
Ringo met The Beatles in 1960, and filled in when drummer Pete Best was sick. When Best was kicked out of the band, Ringo was chosen to take his place. Starr soon adopted the signature Beatles haircut and image.
Ringo was given a solo spot on every Beatles record. Some of The Beatles' most popular songs with Ringo on vocals are "Yellow Submarine" , "With a Little Help from My Friends", and "Boys." Ringo usually did not sing live with The Beatles, but did once in a while.
Starr proved to be the most popular Beatle in America. He was considered the best actor in the group, and received the best reviews for his role in A Hard Day's Night. Ringo is also considered one of the best drummers of all time, and many other drummers were influenced by him, including Phil Collins and Dave Grohl.
Ringo was credited with writing two Beatles songs. The two are "Don't Pass Me By" (on The White Album) and "Octopus's Garden" (on Abbey Road). In addition, Ringo is credited with writing one song together with John and Paul: "What Goes On" (on Rubber Soul). Ringo had a hard time showing his songs to his band mates, for they would often mock his compositions.
- Ringo owns the first UK-released copy of The Beatles (The White Album).
- Ringo was friends with The Who's drummer Keith Moon.
- Ringo was the only lasting Beatle that did not help found them.
- Ringo narrated Season 1 and 2 of Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends.