Ringo Starr interview in New Zealand, 1964

Hear Ringo Starr talking at the St George Hotel, Wellington on 21 June 1964 – the day The Beatles arrived in New Zealand from Australia. He had recently rejoined the tour having had his tonsils removed.


Interviewer: Ringo—

Ringo: Yes.

Interviewer: How do you feel?

Ringo: I’m feeling fine, thank you very much. How are you?

Interviewer: I’m very well.

Ringo: That’s alright then; we’re both alright.

Interviewer: You must be thrilled at joining them all up again.

Ringo: Yeah it was marvelous, y’know, a week ago, a week today, Sunday.

Interviewer: Were you told go quietly at the start?

Ringo: Umm, the doctor advised me, y’know, to take it easy for a couple of days. He said don’t sing for a week, so I didn’t sing all the time we were in Australia.

Interviewer: Oh, that’s good.

Ringo: I may start in New Zealand.

Interviewer: That’s good.

Ringo: It’s not really singing actually. It’s just shouting [laughs].

Interviewer: Ringo, what, if the group ever packs up, have you thought what you can do?

Ringo: Umm I can’t do very much really, I don’t think.

Interviewer: Have you been trained for anything?

Ringo: No, I was a apprentice engineer for four years, but I’d never go back to that, no.

Interviewer: Why?

Ringo: Well, I left it cos I didn’t like it so I’m not going back.

Interviewer: Fair enough.

Ringo: Actually I think I’d be frighten 'cos you, when you sorta start you get used to drills and lathes and all these big machines, but going back’d worry me a bit I think.

Interviewer: Why, I’m going to be very personal, why do you wear two rings on each hand? It’s a gimmick now is it?

Ringo: It’s, no, it’s not. When I was sixteen, me mother bought me me first signet ring, and I sort of built up from there, and I like jewellery you know.

Interviewer: Yes.

Ringo: So, I’ve had these, the same four on since I was twenty-one, which will be three years next month.

Interviewer: And you’ve never taken them off?

Ringo: I’ve never taken them off.

Interviewer: That’s why you’re called Ringo isn’t it?

Ringo: Yeah, but I used to wear different rings when I first got called Ringo in about 19, about, umm, '59 I got called Ringo.

Interviewer: You’ve almost forgotten your real name by now, I suppose.

Ringo: Yeah, it’s, when I have to sign my real name it’s—

Interviewer: You don’t think.

Ringo: Most times I just write Ringo anyway, and I have to cross it off. All me forms look a terrible mess.


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