The Beatles boss duped Ringo Starr out of a song cutting him out
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After The Beatles brought an end to their music-making days in 1970, the band members started focusing on their solo careers. In 1970, Ringo Starr teamed up with legendary music producer Quincy Jones to help record his debut record, Sentimental Journey. But Jones, along with the Fab Four’s tenured producer and mentor, George Martin, hated how the music was sounding on the record.
Jones recalled one dreadful instance that forced him to step in and change how everything was working.
He said: “I remember once we were in the studio with [The Beatles’ producer] George Martin, and Ringo had taken three hours for a four-bar thing he was trying to fix on a song. He couldn’t get it.”
After watching Starr wrestle with the drum fill, he decided to take the song away from the former Beatles drummer.
Jones and Martin said: “Mate, why don’t you get some lager and lime, some shepherd’s pie, and take an hour-and-a-half and relax a little bit?” (Via The New Yorker)
Starr conceded that he could do with a break, so he did as he was told. He left the London studio and went for a bite to eat.
Meanwhile, behind closed doors, Jones and Martin invited noted jazz drummer Ronnie Verrell into the studio. They told him the situation and asked him to fill in for Starr’s drumming.
Jones recalled in 2018: “Ronnie came in for 15 minutes and tore it up.”
90 minutes later, Starr made a comeback and wanted to listen to the drumming that was giving him so much trouble. And when he did, he couldn’t believe his ears.
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Jones said: “Ringo comes back and says: ‘George, can you play it back for me one more time?’ So George did, and Ringo says: ‘That didn’t sound so bad.'”
Jones brutally replied: “Yeah, motherf****r because it ain’t you!”
Despite how the producer felt about Starr’s drumming, he did add: “Great guy, though.”
Although he did not mention exactly which song Starr failed to perform on his album, he did later go on to level the playing field with the rest of The Beatles.
Jones hit out at the Fab Four in a follow-up interview, where he criticised all of their musicianship.
He called The Beatles “the worst musicians in the world”.
He added: “They were no-playing motherf*****s. Paul was the worst bass player I ever heard. And Ringo? Don’t even talk about it.”
These harsh words were eventually addressed by Paul McCartney, who confirmed that Jones did say these things.
However, McCartney also confirmed things changed between them after that.
The Hey Jude singer recalled Jones telling him: “Paul, I didn’t really say that thing – I don’t know what happened, man. I never said that. You know I love you guys!”
McCartney replied: “If you had said that, you know what I would have said? F**k you, Quincy Jones!”
He added: “So actually we just had a laugh!”
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