RINGO STARR BIOGRAPHY & FILMOGRAPHY:
Richard Starkey, most well known by his stage name Ringo Starr, was born July 7, 1940 in Liverpool, England. His parents divorced when he was three, and his mother subsequently married Harry Graves, who encouraged his interest in music at a later age. During most of his youth, Starr was plagued with a variety of ailments and illnesses, thus ruining his education. He suffered from appendicitis, was in a coma, had a concussion, caught a cold that developed into chronic pleurisy, and experienced problems with his lungs. Further complications included allergies and sensitivities to foods.
By the age of fifteen, after so much time spent in hospitals and not in school, he officially dropped out and started working an assortment of odd jobs like delivery boy, barman, and a trainee joiner. After hurting his finger on the first day of a new job, Starr decided to become a drummer. His stepfather helped him realize that dream by buying him a drum set, because of which promised to become the best drummer ever.
Over the next few years he played in a number of different bands, finally settling down with Rory Stone and The Hurricanes. Rory Stone encouraged him to change his name to enhance his career, and thus he legally changed his name to Ringo Starr. While playing at the Kaiserkeller in Hamburg, Germany in 1960, Starr met another band that was playing: The Beatles. He became friendly with them and the next year he left The Hurricanes. Soon after, The Beatles removed their current drummer, Pete Best, and asked Starr to take his place.
At first, things were awkward between him, the band, and the fans. Even when they were recording their first single, “Love Me Do”, Starr was replaced by Andy White. However, the band quickly warmed up to Starr’s easygoing personality, and by 1963 they had reached stardom in the U.K. Only a year later, they were just as big in the U.S. Steadily, The Beatles became a force in the music industry, transforming the art and inspiring many artists even today.
Starr had had another dream since his youth: becoming a professional actor. Joining The Beatles gave him the start he needed. In 1964 the band released their first film, titled “A Hard Day’s Night”. It showed a typical day in the life of The Beatles. A year later they appeared in another movie, “Help!” (1965), in which the other members of the band try to protect Starr from a cult who wants to use him as their human sacrifice. He received great reviews for both performances. Next The Beatles documented their tour with a TV movie called “Magical Mystery Tour” (1967), which Starr helped write, produce, direct, and film. Following, the band made “Yellow Submarine” (1968), an animated feature.
In the same year, Starr began his solo acting career, starting with the sex comedy “Candy” (1968). He acted in one more picture, a comedy titled “A Man Named Christian” (1969), before appearing in The Beatles’ last film together, the documentary “Let It Be” (1970). It featured their famous rooftop concert, which was their last performance for the public ever. It also glimpsed into the reasons for their breakup that same year. The film earned Starr, as well as the other Beatles, an Academy Award for Best Music.
After departing from the band, Starr went on to have his own successful solo music career with dozens of chart toppers and bestselling albums. However, he also remained a steady screen performer. He acted in a television movie, “The Point” (1971), and two films, “200 Motels” (1971) and “Blindman” (1971), before filming and directing his own documentary about the British band T-Rex, “Born to Boogie” (1972). In 1974 he tried his hand at editing for the funny horror flick “Son of Dracula”, in which he played Merlin the Magician, but also served as producer. He continued to act in such films as “Lisztomania” (1975) and “Sextette” (1978). In 1978 he had his own television film called “Ringo”.
Other films that featured the drummer turned actor include the comedy “Caveman” (1981), Paul McCartney’s picture “Give My Regards to Broad Street” (1984), the drama “Water” (1985), and his final movie, “To the North of Katmandu” (1986). In between he began narrating the hit children’s show “Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends” (1984-2003), his longest lasting acting engagement. In 1987 he served as the associate producer for two episodes of the television documentary “Adventure”. Starr then mainly occupied acting positions on TV shows like “Shining Time Station” (1989), “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch” (1998), “Courage the Cowardly Dog” (2000), and “Great Performances” (2004). In 2003 he produced, directed, and filmed a short documentary about the making of his album, called “Ringo Rama”. After, he produced three specials, “Ringo Starr and the All Starr Band 2003” (2004), “Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band Live 2006” (2008), and “Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band Live at the Greek Theater” (2010).
Starr also has been featured in numerous documentaries about The Beatles, which served as a gateway to his own artistic expression both in music and on screen. While he did play many roles on television and in film, he will still be most remembered for his music with The Beatles. He is truly one of the world’s first famous drummers, and many after him have adopted his style and used him for their inspiration. Many would agree with his words: “I’m probably the best rock ‘n’ roll drummer on earth”. On February 8, 2010 he was awarded with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in recording.
When asked about his recent age turn of seventy years, he replied with optimism: “As far as I'm concerned, in my head, I'm 24. That's just how it is. The number, yeah, it's high. But I just felt I've got to celebrate it. I'm not hiding from it, you know.” So don’t expect to see him going anywhere anytime soon.
2010 Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band Live at the Greek Theater
2008 Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band Live 2006
2004 Ringo Starr and the All Starr Band 2003
2004 Great Performances
2003 Ringo Rama
2000 Courage the Cowardly Dog
1998 Sabrina, the Teenage Witch
1995 The Beatles Anthology
1992 Shelley Duvall's Bedtime Stories
1990 Shining Time Station: 'Tis a Gift
1989 Shining Time Station
1987 Withnail & I
1986 Mona Lisa
1986 To the North of Katmandu
1985 Alice in Wonderland
1985 Willie and the Poor Boys
1984 Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends
1984 Give My Regards to Broad Street
1983 Princess Daisy
1982 The Cooler
1974 Son of Dracula
1973 That'll Be the Day
1972 Born to Boogie
1971 Come Together
1971 200 Motels
1971 The Point
1970 Let It Be
1969 The Magic Christian
1968 Yellow Submarine
1967 Magical Mystery Tour
1966 Reflections on Love
1964 A Hard Day's Night