The Beatles’ drummer is planning a new U.S. tour, and his first album in years. No, not Ringo Starr: Pete Best, the group’s original fourth member.
John Lennon’s pre-Beatles band the Quarrymen had earlier played some of its first dates at Liverpool’s Casbah Coffee Club, run by Best’s mom. Best would then join the group in 1960, just in time for the Beatles’ initial appearances at Hamburg, Germany, and remained until 1962.
He was drummer on the group’s very first studio efforts, backing singer Tony Sheridan. Best also participated in the Beatles’ failed try out for Decca Records, before appearing on four initial songs recorded for EMI at Abbey Road — including the first take on their eventual breakout hit “Love Me Do.” (A cover of “Ain’t She Sweet” and an original instrumental called “Cry from a Shadow” from the Sheridan sessions, along with several of the Decca recordings, would eventually find a home on Anthology 1 in 1995.)
After those early sessions, however, Best was replaced — first by studio musician Andy White and then ultimately by Starr.
The rest, of course, is pop history.
Best, meanwhile, made several attempts at jump starting a solo career, but then largely stayed out of the limelight until the late 1980s, when he appeared at a Beatles convention in Liverpool. Since, he was toured and recorded, along with younger brother Roag, in the Pete Best Band. Together, they issued Hayman’s Green in 2008.
In a new talk with Steve Marinucci of The Examiner, Best now says he’s ready to return to the studio — and maybe even schedule some dates in America. Best will again be collaborating with Roag, and guitarists Paul Parry, Phil Melia and Tony Flynn on the new songs, he says.
“We’re working on tracks to put another album out there,” he tells Marinucci. “The key question on that one is when we get the chance to actually complete it.”
Concert dates could follow, though nothing firm has been set.
“At the present moment, there’s talk about a possible U.S. tour,” Best tells Marinucci. “There’s talks afoot as regard to availability. That’s the big question at the present moment. Hopefully, we’ll try and cross the pond and get into the States before the end of the year.”