Did Ringo Drum on The Beatles single, “Love Me Do”?

5th October 1962: The Beatles First Single Is Issued In The UK

After the first session with George Martin on 4th September 1962, Martin decided to bring in a session drummer. Andy White was recruited for the second session a week later.

“Ringo Didn’t Drum on the First Single”

Paul was convinced that Ringo didn’t play drums on the group’s first Parlophone single, “Love Me Do” – and Ringo agreed. Yet history has shown that he was indeed on the UK single release. Considering that Andy White was hired to drum on the recording, there are questions. Was Ringo’s version mistakenly released on the UK single? After all, the White version of “Love Me Do” appeared on The Beatles’ debut studio album Please Please Me, the UK EP release The Beatles’ Hits, and also on their U.S. single release.

“Love Me Do” The Beatles’ first single released on 5th October 1962

Was it released by mistake? Any evidence?

If the Ringo version wasn’t considered good enough after 4th September, why release that first version? Neither George Martin nor Ron Richards were sure if it was selected intentionally or not.

Releases of “Love Me Do” issued after The Beatles’ Hits on 21st September 1963 contained Andy White’s version. Why? The original master recording of Ringo’s version of “Love Me Do” destroyed or recorded over. EMI only had Andy White’s 11th September recording to use. It was the only remaining – and arguably the superior – version. When “Love Me Do” was released in the U.S. in April 1964, it was Andy White’s version that was used.

McArtney not McCartney!

A further mistake was made when 250 promo discs of “Love Me Do” were released, misspelling Paul’s name as McArtney; something he was used to in Mersey Beat. One of these discs was sold in October 2017 for $14,757, the most expensive 7-inch single ever sold.

50th Anniversary Mistake

In a twist of fate – or was it an inside joke – when Apple decided to reissue “Love Me Do” on the 50th anniversary, they initially used Andy White’s version. They then had to quickly recall those records, so that Ringo’s version could be issued.

The final piece of evidence is one of omission. With the group’s popularity increasing, why did they not ask Ringo to re-record “Love Me Do” for the album? The conclusion is that Ringo’ version was most likely released by accident. That is not uncommon in the recording industry, even today. Nothing else really makes sense.

REVIEW OF THE BEATLES’ FIRST PARLOPHONE SINGLE

Specially written for this Press Release By Tony Barrow. His weekly column OFF THE RECORD by “DISKER” appears each Saturday in THE LIVERPOOL ECHO AND EVENING EXPRESS

For many years the Tennessee town of Nashville has been known as the golden capital of America’s Country & Western music industry. In its own way, I guess, Liverpool has become the British beat equivalent to Nashville for the city, deep in the heart of Z Cars country, boasts an almost incredible array of thriving rock ‘n’ roll beat groups.

WHINING HARMONICA

The most popular of these is THE BEATLES a group which deserves the nationwide following which its Parlophone recordings will surely bring. On the evidence of “LOVE ME DO” nobody can claim that THE BEATLES are a carbon of The Everlys, The Brooks, The Allisons, The Shadows or any other existing outfit. Theirs is a thoroughly distinctive vocal sound backed by the semi-plaintive, semi-impatient rasp and whine of John Lennon’s remarkably expressive harmonica plus a stout guitar and solid drum beat.

SIMPLY INFECTIOUS

The lyrics of this infectious, medium-paced ballad are simple and it is in this easy-to-remember simplicity that THE BEATLES can pin their well-founded hopes of hit parade headlines for their very first Parlophone outing.

ANOTHER PUNCHY VOCAL

The under-deck carries something much more than the traditional (albeit ungenerous) B side padding. “P.S. I LOVE YOU” is a bright, up-tempo ditty with another punchy John Lennon/Paul McCartney vocal and a smart, rhythmic backdrop which has a colourful Latin tint to it.

IF YOU CAN’T BEET ‘EM……………..

Beetles did you say, George? Course I’ve heard of them. Your Grandfather (may he rest in peace) used to put down some powdery stuff to stop them coming in the house.”

“No, Grandma. BEATLES. With ‘A’ before the ‘T’”.

“Hay? No, I’m sure it was powdery stuff. And who ever heard of beetles supping tea?”

“BEATLES, Grandma. It’s a group………………..there are four of them……………..and they’re on Parlophone”.

“We haven’t got a phone in the parlour, George. Anyway I don’t want hear any more about them. They give me the creeps. Nasty big black things”.

“But they’re not black, Grandma………… They’re white …………. And they’re British!…..”

 

Excerpt from Finding the Fourth Beatle the story of the 23 drummers who put the beat into The Beatles

Find out more in Finding the Fourth Beatle

David Bedford

www.davidabedford.com

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Why Pete Best Was Not Sacked

PETE BEST WAS NOT SACKED AND HERE IS WHY

Since 1962, one of the hottest debates has centred around Brian Epstein’s dismissal of Pete Best from The Beatles. The controversy has inspired articles, chapters and even entire books, all speculating on the reasons why Pete was dismissed from the group on the cusp of stardom. However, we have been looking at this most well-known chapter in Beatles history the wrong way. As we know, Brian Epstein summoned Pete Best to NEMS on 16th August 1962, for what Pete thought was a routine meeting, but finished up being the day that would define his life. Even though we will demonstrate that Pete was not dismissed by Brian, this does not mean that either Pete or Brian have ever lied about what went on that day. The accounts from both of them have been consistent through the years. After nervously exchanging some small talk, Brian then uttered those fateful words:

“The Boys Want You Out”

I don’t know how to tell you this, but the boys want you out and it has already been agreed that Ringo is joining on Saturday.”

Pete recalled what happened next. “I was stunned and found words difficult. Only one echoed through my mind. Why, why, why? ‘They don’t think you’re a good enough drummer, Pete,’ Brian went on. ‘And George Martin doesn’t think you’re a good enough drummer.’ ‘I consider myself as good, if not better, than Ringo,’ I could hear myself saying.

does ringo know yet?

“Then I asked: ‘Does Ringo knew about this yet?’ ‘He’s joining on Saturday,’ Eppy said. So everything was all neatly packaged. A conspiracy had clearly been going on for some time behind my back, but not one of the other Beatles could find the courage to tell me. The stab in the back had been left to Brian, and it had been left until almost the last minute. Even Ringo had been a party to it, someone else I had considered to be a pal until this momentous day.”

The meeting continued. “Epstein went on to what for him was simply next business at this shattering meeting. ‘There are still a couple of venues left before Ringo joins – will you play?’ ‘Yes,’ I nodded, not really knowing what I was saying, for my mind was in a turmoil. How could this happen to me?

Why had it taken two years for John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison to decide that my drumming was not of a high enough standard for them? Dazed, I made my way out of Brian’s office. Downstairs, Neil was waiting for me. ‘What’s happened?’ he asked as soon as he saw me, ‘you look as if you’ve seen a ghost.’” Pete walked straight passed Billy Kinsley and Tony Crane of The Merseybeats, the group Brian was hoping Pete would join.”

was pete best sacked? Examining the Evidence

We have to carefully look at, and challenge, every piece of available evidence, and consider the following statements:

  • Pete was sacked/ dismissed by Brian – the accepted truth since 1962
  • “He (Pete) was hired so he could be fired” and “John, Paul and George could fire him”

Definition of Dismissal: “Dismissal (referred to informally as firing or sacking) is the termination of employment by an employer against the will of an employee.”

Pete Best wasn’t employed by Brian, so Brian couldn’t sack him. Pete wasn’t hired/ employed by John, Paul and George, so they couldn’t sack him. In fact, Pete was a self-employed musician, so couldn’t be sacked by anybody.

he wasn’t sacked

Now that we know he wasn’t sacked, we have to examine what really happened.

The reason Brian used those exact words, “the boys want you out and it has already been agreed that Ringo is joining on Saturday” was not accidental; they were carefully chosen. Brian, as we know, was terribly nervous about the meeting and was clearly agitated, as Pete Best observed. It was because Brian had to get the wording right, or it could have had dire consequences. That is because Brian had to convince Pete that he was being sacked and replaced, without saying those words.

Why?

Getting rid of Pete Best was not an easy matter; he couldn’t be “fired, because he had been hired” (Tune In), because when he joined The Beatles, he wasn’t hired as a paid employee; it was as an equal member, and therefore they became a partnership. The Beatles of John, Paul, George and Pete signed a Partnership Agreement at the end of 1961.

Further evidence is provided by the management contract that John, Paul, George and Pete signed as members of The Beatles, and that Brian failed to sign. If Pete Best was simply a “hired hand”, then the contract would not have included him. The four Beatles were performing as a group, as a partnership. No member of that partnership could fire another member. There needed to be a complex examination of the legal partnership among The Beatles and that management contract. Epstein needed the help of his solicitor, David Harris, to find a way to follow the instructions of John, Paul and George to get rid of Pete Best from The Beatles.

interview with brian Epstein’s lawyer

“Best wasn’t employed by Brian,” said Harris, “he was in partnership with the other three Beatles, and they had a partnership as a group known as ‘The Beatles’. Their partnership didn’t have to be in writing – not all contracts have to be in writing – but in general terms, a contract doesn’t have to be in writing. It can be verbal, like buying something in a shop. Same with this informal partnership agreement where they would work together as a group and share their profits. They could have agreed among themselves that they could divide the profits between themselves in any way they wanted.” What Harris didn’t know at the time is that The Beatles had a formal partnership agreement arranged in December 1961.

brian had no authority to get rid of pete

“The problem was,” advised Harris, “that it was a Partnership; Brian had no authority to get rid of Pete. They (the other three Beatles) had to get rid of Pete, and they had to dissolve the partnership. Brian could say Pete was being replaced by Ringo. I wrote a letter saying Brian would happily place him (Pete) in another group, as that was in his character anyway. He couldn’t sack him. The personal relationships didn’t suggest it, but the legal relationship did, that Pete was engaging Brian to provide work for him.” Brian Epstein was therefore employed by Pete and the other Beatles.

finding the fourth beatle

Brian Epstein, on behalf of The Beatles, had already approached Bobby Graham, Ritchie Galvin and would also ask Johnny Hutchinson later this same day, but Ringo had already been lined up.

Read the full interview with Brian’s lawyer, David Harris, in Finding the Fourth Beatle.

David Bedford

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