Watch a New Interview with Ringo for AARP Magazine


Nearly 60 years after the Beatles first touched down in the U.S. in February 1964, legendary drummer Ringo Starr reflects on what made the Beatles a great band and how he continues to create music with “peace and love.”

In this exclusive AARP interview, Starr reflects on everything the Beatles packed into less than a decade, from joining the band in 1962 to their split in 1970. He highlights the working dynamic of the “Fab Four” that included himself, John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison. Starr attributes their prolific growth to Paul McCartney’s relentless efforts to record new music, which pushed them to release 12 studio albums (broken up into 17 in the U.S.) in seven years, including “Please Please Me” (1963), “A Hard Day’s Night” (1964), “Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band” (1967), “The Beatles” (“The White Album”) (1968), “Abbey Road” (1969) and “Let It Be” (1970).

Starr looks back on his unconventional introduction to music while hospitalized for illness during his childhood. After the medical staff entertained him with percussion instruments, Starr decided he wanted to be a drummer. As he got older, he saved up to buy a drum set and played in skiffle bands around Britain in the late ’50s and early ’60s. In 1962, Starr’s life changed forever when he accepted John Lennon’s invitation to join the Beatles.

Starr discusses his career as a solo artist, which is still going strong at 83 years old. Since the breakup of the Beatles, Starr has released 20 studio albums and consistently tours with his All-Starr Band. This past October, he released his fourth EP, “Rewind Forward,” which includes a song written by McCartney, “Feeling the Sunlight.” 

Finally, Starr reminisces on the Beatles’ historic first trip to the U.S. in February 1964. Greeted at John F. Kennedy Airport by thousands of screaming fans, the band was immediately hit with “Beatlemania” in the States. During their trip, the band performed on “The Ed Sullivan Show” to a record 73 million viewers. They capped their performance with “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” which was the group’s first American number 1 hit and became the Beatles’ best-selling single worldwide. 

Featured songs courtesy Universal Music Group:
• "Miss Jean” from “Rewind Forward,” performed by Ringo Starr
• “Shadows on the Wall” from “Rewind Forward,” performed by Ringo Starr
• “Rewind Forward” from “Rewind Forward,” performed by Ringo Starr
• “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” performed by the Beatles on “The Ed Sullivan Show”

Ringo is also on the mag's cover.