Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Don't Pass Me By
Before I get off this Beatles thing, I wanted to say a few words about Ringo. My friend Gavin has on his site the answer to a question from a reader asking if Ringo was simply the luckiest man in showbiz. Gavin does a good job of making the case for Ringo, but one thing that bears pointing out is that, as Ringo himself once said to the Queen, "I was the last to join." John, Paul and George knew each other as teenagers growing up in Liverpool, but Ringo was recruited. John, Paul and (especially) George wanted very much to have Ringo in their band, and Lennon and McCartney, you may have noticed, knew a thing or two about musicianship. At the very least, it's a safe bet that Ringo was far and away the best drummer in Liverpool, for whatever that's worth.
The other thing that is so endearing about Ringo is that he really, really loved the Beatles. "I was an only child," he said, "and suddenly I felt as though I'd got three brothers. In the old days we'd have the hugest hotel suites, the whole floor of the hotel, and the four of us would end up in the bathroom, just to be with each other."
On the Beatles Anthology DVD, there are some leftover extra scenes showing the three surviving Beatles sitting around in the grass at one of George Harrison's estates. At the very end of the day, Ringo says to the other two: "This has been a real pleasure for me. I enjoy hanging out with you guys."