Living music legend Ringo Starr celebrates his 74th birthday today!
Ringo Starr was born on July 7, 1940 as Richard Starkey in Liverpool, England to parents Richard, or “Big Ritchie,” and Elsie. Ringo seemed to have had quite a tough childhood, being a sickly kid and having been raised under poor conditions. He spent long periods for treatments first at a children’s hospital and later on at a sanatorium where he became part of the hospital band, thereby developing his interest in drumming. However, Ringo did not return to school after his two-year stay at the sanatorium, choosing instead to spend time at home and play along with music using a makeshift drum set consisting of biscuit tins and sticks.
Ringo began working when he was 15. After brief stints at the British Rail and on a day boat as a waiter, he, with the help of his stepfather Harry Graves, was finally able to get a job as a machinist at a local equipment manufacturer. It was there where Ringo met Roy Trafford, a future band mate (with Eddie Clayton and the Clayton Squares) who had introduced him to skiffle music.
Ringo played for a few more bands between 1957 and 1961 before finally joining The Beatles in 1962 at John Lennon ’s request, replacing Pete Best. Of course, Ringo would be known all over the world for his almost eight-year stint as drummer for the Liverpudlian band, with which he had also composed songs for and played lead vocalist a few times. After The Beatles split up in 1970, Ringo, like his band mates, had also pursued a career as a solo artist.
As such, Ringo has produced several top 10 hits and a total of 17 successful studio albums. He continues to be active in the industry as well – in fact, he and his All-Starr Band is currently on a North American summer tour!
Ringo continues to enjoy his status as one of the most important and respected musical luminaries in the world. His invaluable contributions to the music industry have been recognized numerous times by various important entities over the decades, including the British monarchy, the Academy Awards, and the Grammys.
Oh, and aside from making music, did you know that Ringo dabbled in photography, too? Just last year, his book “Photograph” was published, containing hundreds of photographs he took himself!
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Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr rock the 56th Grammys stage
Ringo Starr Looking Funny with Glass Eyeballs ‘Popping Out’ of His Eye Sockets
A Young Ringo Starr Threatening To Punch A Young Paul McCartney For Wearing A ‘To Hell with the Beatles!’ Badge
Ringo Casually Lights a Cigarette While Wearing a Vertically Striped Coat
Want more articles about the Fab Four? Check out The Beatles tag in the Lomography magazine!