"I'VE GOT BLISTERS ON MY FINGERS"
"To be or not to be, I don't care,
The question is, are you alive out there?
It don't take brains, just heart and soul,
I think therefore I rock and roll"
Ringo Starr (born Richard Starkey July 7, 1940) was the more notable of the two drummers for The Beatles
, replacing Pete Best
. And he is awesome.
Following his career with the Fab Four, he has had a very successful solo career.
Aside from his musical career, he's also a pretty accomplished actor, starring in the prehistoric comedy film Caveman
, and had a co-starring role with Peter Sellers
in The Magic Christian
, and has appeared in many other films over the years. He will play a character and sing the theme song for a 2013 revival special of The Powerpuff Girls
on Cartoon Network
Some see him as the the Beatles' Garfunkel
, having only been credited for writing two Beatles songs which are mostly viewed as Album Filler
(although "Octopus' Garden" appeared on a Greatest Hits Album
). Ringo himself is often very Self Deprecating
about this. The other Beatles tried to avoid this, however, by giving him at least one song to sing on every album, and have repeatedly declared his importance for the band in interviews. John Lennon
, who often hired Ringo as his drummer after the breakup because he had gotten used to his groove, noted in an interview that "Ringo's a damn good drummer. He always was a good drummer. He's not technically good, but I think Ringo's drumming is underrated the same way as Paul's
bass playing is underrated."
Oh, and did we mention he provided narration for a large number of episodes in the Thomas the Tank Engine
series, and also played the Conductor?
- Sentimental Journey - 1970 (A Cover Album of Tin Pan Alley standards, decades before Paul McCartney, Rod Stewart and other singers did the same thing)
- Beaucoups of Blues - 1970 (Another Cover Album, this time of Country Music songs)
- Ringo -1973
- Goodnight Vienna - 1974
- Ringo's Rotogravure - 1976
- Ringo the 4th - 1977
- Bad Boy - 1978
- Stop and Smell the Roses - 1981
- Old Wave - 1983
- Time Takes Time - 1992
- Vertical Man - 1998
- Ringo Rama - 2003
- Choose Love - 2005
- Liverpool 8 - 2008
- Y Not - 2010
- Ringo 2012 - 2012
- Adorkable: Played up in the movies.
- All Drummers Are Animals: Generally averted, though he was often seen as the most offbeat Beatle.
- Blinding Bangs: No more than the other three, but anime dubbing companies often turn characters with Blinding Bangs into parodies of him, riddling their dialogue with Beatles references. This is shown in Kinnikuman with Geronimo/"Beatlebomb" (one of the most criticized aspects of the dub) and Nihiru/Ringo from Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo.
- Boring, but Practical: As noted in the Lennon quote above, he's not a great drummer technically - because he was a left-handed boy who only had access to a right-handed drum kit. Lennon also joked that "[Ringo]'s not even the best drummer in the Beatles!" However, he contributed stylistically creative drum parts to the Beatles' songs, displaying a talent for moulding his drumming style to whatever the other Beatles needed. He is also very, very good at keeping time and very rarely caused takes to break down due to mistakes.
- Catch Phrase: "PEACE and LOVE!" He says it so much that it veers into Verbal Tic territory.
- Chick Magnet: People tend to forget that he had as many devoted fangirls as the others, if not more; his girlfriend in Liverpool was getting threatened by numerous crazy types before Beatlemania proper even started. That gag in A Hard Day's Night about him getting the most fanmail was actually true.
- Classically Trained Extra: "You're Sixteen" features a guest appearance by Paul McCartney... on kazoo! (or kazoo-like noises)
- Cleopatra Nose: And his fangirls thought it was his charm point!
- Dull Surprise: During the Beatles performances, when not smiling (or singing) he had a "barely caring" scowl.
- The Garfunkel: When it comes to songwriting, Ringo doesn't get as much credit compared with the other Beatles. Understandable, as while the Beatles were together, he wrote only two songs by himself. But to be fair, he was a great drummer.
- Gag Nose: Richard Stanley Barbecue Shark-Nose Argos Liverpool Smallheadicus Nil Sellotape Starkey, more well known as Ringo Starr, The Best Drummer In The World Ever Called Ringle, or That Nose With A Short Guy Attached To It.
- Grief Song: "Never Without You" for George Harrison. "Photograph", which George himself helped Ringo record, also became this after George's death.
- The Heart: Many fans and critics considered him the most expendable Beatle, but the other Beatles recognized Ringo as helping keep them together during the most tense of times. He once walked out of the band during the sessions for The White Album and went on holiday in Italy; when he was finally convinced to return he found his drumkit decorated with flowers. After they broke up, he was the only one to maintain friendly relations with the other three.
- Innocent Blue Eyes: Generally played and/or perceived as the innocent Beatle, due to his Plucky Comic Relief status in the films.
- It's Pronounced Tro-PAY : Saying "Ringo" without putting the emphasis on "go" is a crime.
- Japandering: There's this, but in Ringo's defense the ad is actually quite clever.note
- Live Album: Several, most notably the series of Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band releases.
- Malaproper: Ringo was noted for this; he is generally credited with coining the phrases "a hard day's night", "eight days a week", and "tomorrow never knows".
- Meaningful Name: His nickname, which dates back to his pre-Beatle days with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, comes from his affinity for rings.
- Metaphor Is My Middle Name: "Drumming Is My Madness".
Drumming is my middle name
- Odd Name Out: John, Paul, George, and... Ringo.
- Older than They Look: He's 72, but he looks like he could be in his 40s (and with a little face cream, even late 30s. Seriously.◊), and doesn't look a day over 50.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: His real name is Richard.
- Precision F-Strike: According to this interview with his first wife Maureen, he used one of these right before he (temporarily) walked out on the White Album sessions. (It's especially funny when you contrast him with John, master of the Cluster F-Bomb.)
... I will never forget what he muttered as he folded his socks and put them in the suitcase. He said "Paul is a freaking
Q: You used freaking instead of the "F" word?
A: (laughs) Yes I did. He put so much stress on that word that it shocked me to hear him say it because he usually isn't like that.
- Self-Deprecating Humor: He is very fond of it. The last verse of his song "Early 1970" jokingly claims that he only knows "three chords" on the guitar, and in the Anthology documentary, he also jokes that he only knows "three chords" on the guitar and piano while discussing "Don't Pass Me By".
- Silly Love Songs: Plenty.
- The Southpaw: Initially caused him some difficulty, as his drum kit was right-handed.
- Step Up to the Microphone: To make the Beatles a full Vocal Tag Team, Ringo had a song in every album but A Hard Day's Night. John and Paul even joked that their version of the song they gave to The Rolling Stones was sung by Ringo...
- This dates back to his days with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes; part of the logic behind his stage name was that it allowed the group to bill his solos as "Starr Time." (After joining The Beatles, he continued to cover one of his usual Rory numbers—The Shirelles' "Boys"—which made it onto the album Please Please Me.)
- Type Casting: Tended to get cast as characters reminiscent of his Real Life persona, starting with A Hard Day's Night (in which he played an exaggerated version of himself). He once noted that he really wanted to play a villain just to shake things up.
- The Wild West: His stage name was originally intended to evoke this; when he was with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, the band decided to do a bit of Wild West-inspired Theme Naming for all its members, and Ringo's stuck even after he became a Beatle.
- V Sign: Basically his iconic gesture.