Is Ringo Ridiculed Too Much For His Drumming?
The recent “Saturday Night Live” 40th anniversary show included the hilarious clip of Lorne Michaels offering The Beatles $3,000 to reunite on the show. The producer jokingly says, “If you want to give Ringo less, that’s up to you.”Though Starr is often playfully ridiculed for riding the coattails of John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison, one person who staunchly defends the Fab Four drummer is Chris McBurney, who plays the role of Ringo in the national touring production of Let It Be.
“There’s an old drummer joke: What do you call a guy who hangs around musicians? A drummer,” said McBurney, calling from London, Ontario. “So it’s really because the Beatles are one of the most famous bands in history. And being the drummer, Ringo gets hooked up into that joke. I take that kind of criticism about Ringo with a grain of salt. It’s pretty silly.”
The live show covers the Beatles’ rise from their humble beginnings through the heights of Beatlemania and later studio masterpieces. As for Starr’s style, McBurney said it’s challenging and unique.
“On the surface, people don’t think of him as being an expert technical drummer, but if you really get into the music like I have — and some of these other Beatle freaks have — it’s well-known he’s regarded as one of the best rock drummers in history,” McBurney said.
Let It Be caters to both diehard fans and younger audiences who haven’t fully experienced the power of John, Paul, George and Ringo. Naturally, McBurney want folks to leave with a newfound respect for Starr. “I would hope so, sure,” McBurney said.