Ringo’s beats and threads

Ringo’s upcoming book.

Ringo is soon to publish a new book, with his regular publisher, Julien’s Auctions. The book, titled “Beats & Threads: Fashion of a Beatle” is about the drummer’s various outfits and drums, from the Beatles era. In a series of promotional videos for the book, we get to see Ringo with various of his Beatles outfits, from the green “Hey Jude” jacket, his Sgt Pepper uniform and Maureen’s red raincoat from the rooftop concert.

Here’s how the publisher presents the contents of the new book:

Featuring nearly 300 shimmering images capturing iconic and many never-before-seen intimate moments of Ringo’s illustrious life and career, along with the drum icon’s warm memories told in his own words, this immense tribute to the enduring influence and time transcending impact of the Fab Four member is a ticket to ride through fashion and Beatles history and gets back to why Ringo’s trend setting threads were as signature as the beat of his drums.

Ringo – in collaboration with noted historian, author, speaker, drummer, and vintage drum collector, Gary Astridge – offers for the first-time the most comprehensive look at his legendary Beatles-era drum kits containing decades of research-based information with curated and detailed photographs of these pieces of music history.

The “Hey Jude” suit – from pages in the book.

The work incorporates archival documentation including drum specifications, contracts with drum making companies such as Ajax Edgware, music engagement schedules and more. The book uncovers new perspectives and untold stories of Ringo’s and the Beatles’ musical and style evolution, such as the remarkable revelation of The Beatles’ “Drop-T” logo and its actual creator, Eddie Stokes, includes the one and only photo that exists of the late freelance sign painter of one of the most recognizable logos in the world.

Nine of Ringo’s original drum kits are presented here:

  • 1958 Ajax Edgware drum kit
  • 1960 Premier Mahogany Duroplastic
  • 1963 Ludwig Downbeat Drum kit
  • 1963 Oyster Black Pearl Ludwig Jazz Festival Snare Drum (considered one of his most important and utilized instrument in Ringo’s assortment of drums throughout his Beatles career and heard on most of their recordings)
  • 1964 Ludwig Downbeat Drum kit
  • 1964 Ludwig Super Classic Drum kit
  • 1965 Ludwig Super Classic Drum kit
  • 1967 Ludwig Super Classic Drum kit
  • 1967 Ludwig Silver Sparkle Drum kit

Also featured are his cymbals, concert toms, and beyond.

Posing with Maureen’s red vinyl raincoat.

Alongside this treasure trove of information are pages bursting with dazzling images of Ringo’s iconic clothing worn playing behind his drums, his life off and on the road, in studio and at home.

From the early influence of the Beatles manager and father figure, Brian Epstein (who was instrumental in creating their early modern look of the Beatles’ iconic three-piece black suit designed by Douglas Millings and Beatle Boots) to the Fab Four’s individual and most photographed styles – such as Ringo’s “Hey Jude” green pinstripe three-piece ensemble worn in the filming of their iconic performance filmed at Twickenham Film Studios on August 4, 1968 to his custom-made embellished “All You Need is Love” lavender silk tunic – these photographs capture the decades’ spirit and the Beatles phenomenon.

Adding to the lore are Ringo’s unforgettable and inimitable style created by the designers who crafted these artisanal pieces from London’s most distinguished designers on Savile Row to King’s Road, Chelsea to the hippie floral shirts and bold color jackets from the Hung on You boutique as well as Ringo’s insouciant choice of wearing then wife Maureen’s red vinyl raincoat to protect himself from the inclement weather in the Beatles’ 1969 mythic Apple Studios rooftop performance of the filming of “Let It Be”.

“I enjoyed getting it together with the help of Gary, Scotty and Julien’s and I hope you enjoy it too! Peace and love, Ringo,” said Ringo Starr.

Foreword by Gary Astridge

The massive impact of The Beatles on music, fashion, and culture in general, is a once-in-a-century phenomenon that is unimaginable in today’s hyper-fragmented entertainment environment. In 1964, at age seven, experiencing The Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show undoubtedly changed my life’s trajectory. Whatever I may have been, the influences of John, Paul, George, and most assuredly Ringo, changed me as a person, living an entirely different life. The same might be said for many who are reading this book. These pages contain decades of research-based information, along with previously unknown perspectives. Many are based on personal interactions and conversations with Ringo, along with little-known eyewitnesses to the Beatle phenomenon, some of whom are mentioned in the credits of this book. My hands-on access to all of Ringo’s existing Beatle-era drums has provided answers to many questions that had lingered for decades while opening new doors of interest and research. Included are plenty of never-before-seen photos, noteworthy facts, and interesting backstories about Ringo’s drums and fashion. Enjoy. Gary Astridge

The book can be preordered from Julien’s Auctions. All proceeds go to Ringo’s charitable organisation, the Lotus Foundation.

Make sure to also check out Gary’s website, Ringo’s Beatle Kits

Here’s another one of those promotional videos, this time presenting the “Ed Sullivan Show” drum kit:

In other news, Ringo has just announced a twelve shows mini tour in May-June 2024, and published a list of six concerts in Las Vegas and two in Mexico City:

May 22 Las Vegas, NV – The Venetian
May 25 Las Vegas, NV – The Venetian
May 26 Las Vegas, NV – The Venetian
May 29 Las Vegas, NV – The Venetian
May 31 Las Vegas, NV – The Venetian
Jun 1 Las Vegas, NV – The Venetian
June 5 Mexico City, MX – Auditorio Nacional
Jun 6 Mexico City, MX – Auditorio Nacional

6 Responses

  1. G.D. Wilde says:

    too expensive to import to Europe …

  2. Tim Wilson says:

    The Beatles had such an impact on the mod fashions of the time (and often not consciously so). The Apple boutique, although a commercial failure, was a symbol of their desire to spread youthful and daring design from the late 60s. It’s great to see that raincoat that Ringo wore at the rooftop LIB performance and the Sgt Pepper outfit.
    I hope one day these kinds of items from our heroes end up in a Beatles museum or exhibition in Liverpool or London. They have enough between them, I am sure, to fill up a reasonable amount of space.

  3. James Peet says:

    It’s seemingly America that all Beatles and related items come from. You could be forgiven for thinking that the Beatles were American. I’m sad that Ringo is now totally based in the US. I’ve seen books published by Julien’s Auctions, and the price is extortionate. For once, I’ve decided against buying this book. Then there’s the cost of getting it from America to the UK/Europe.

    • Tim Wilson says:

      In Ringo’s case, the reason for his US residence is likely due to the fact that the majority of those he plays, records and tours with are based in the US too. The book is expensive but please remember everyone, it’s not just to line the pockets of already well to do Ringo. Its profits are going to charity.

      • James Peet says:

        That’s admirable of Ringo, though maybe it would raise more money for this cause if the price was reduced.

        Mid-Atlantic accents are a bit of a bugbear for me. I once met a Scouse taxi driver in Queensland, Australia, and you’d have thought he’d just moved there from Liddypool last week. It turned out he’d left England in 1974.

        Anyway, good on Ring’ for doing a good thing.

  4. angellus8e9025cca8 says:

    Among the drumkits discussed on the book, I think it is not mentioned the one used on the Get Back sessions

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