Ringo: With a Little Help

Ringo: With a Little Help

 by Michael Seth Starr


The first book to cover the entire arc of Ringo Starr’s life and career, from his birth in Liverpool to the present day.

Ringo: With a Little Help (July 2015, Backbeat Books, $32.99) by Michael Seth Starr is the first in-depth biography of Ringo Starr, the drummer who kept the beat for an entire generation and who remains a rock icon more fifty years after the Beatles took the world by storm.

Born in 1940 as Richard Starkey in the Dingle, one of Liverpool’s most gritty, rough-and-tumble neighborhoods, he rose from a hardscrabble childhood – marked by serious illnesses, long hospital stays, and little schooling – to emerge, against all odds, as a locally renowned drummer. Taking the stage name Ringo Starr, his big break with the Beatles rocketed him to the pinnacle of worldwide acclaim in a remarkably short time.

Several years into Beatlemania, Ringo is quoted as saying, “I’m here because it happened, but I didn’t do anything to make it happen apart from saying ‘Yes.’”

He was the last member of the Beatles to join the group and also the most vulnerable, and his post-Beatles career was marked by chart-topping successes, a jet-setting life of excess and alcohol abuse, and, ultimately, his rebirth as a clean-living children’s television star and one of rock’s most revered elder statesman.

Longtime E Street Band drummer Max Weinberg, who along with fellow drumming icons Phil Collins, John Densmore, and Kenny Aranoff, is featured in the book’s epilogue, wrote, “More than any other drummer, Ringo Starr changed my life. Ringo’s beat was heard around the world, and he drew the spotlight toward rock & roll drumming.”

Ringo: With a Little Help traces the entire arc of Ringo’s remarkable life and career and, in time for his 75th birthday, paints the most vivid picture yet of the most famous drummer the world has ever known.

6.0″ x 9.0″
442 pages
Backbeat Books, an imprint of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group


Michael Seth Starr is the TV editor for the New York Post, where he has written about television for the past 20 years.  He is a native of northern New Jersey, and has authored biographies of Peter Sellers, Art Carney, Joey Bishop, Bobby Darin, Raymond Burr, and Redd Foxx. Unlike Ringo, he was born with the last name Starr; they are not related. He lives in northern New Jersey.


Reviews for Ringo: With a Little Help

“This in-depth bio of the overshadowed Beatle reminds us how crucial he was to their success.” – People

“Until Ringo pens his memoirs (if he ever does), this biography will serve as the most complete and up-to-date telling of his life story. For fans of all things Beatles and rock star biographies.” – Samantha Gust, Niagara Univ. Lib., NY, Library Journal

Ringo: With a Little Help is clearly the definitive biography of one of the most famous musicians – or, heck, people – of the last century (though author Starr could not get subject Starr to participate). And, while he did get help along the way, Richard Starkey richly deserves this solid literary treatment.” – Houston Chronicle



Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group, the trade book division of Hal Leonard Corporations, publishes books on the performing arts under the imprints Hal Leonard Books, Backbeat Books, Amadeus Press, and Applause Theatre and Cinema Books.

Posted on July 10, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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