The Limited Times

Now you can see non-English news...

Wonderful next to a man - voila! culture

2022-08-17T19:23:07.957Z

60 years ago this week the members of the Beatles informed Pete Best that he was fired. Today, at the age of 80, he is still waiting for one last whiskey with Paul McCartney



A miracle next to a man

60 years ago this week the members of the Beatles informed Pete Best that he was fired.

This was a surprise, given the fact that he was the most popular member of the band.

In a few years they will become the biggest band in the world, and he will try to commit suicide.

Today, at the age of 80, he is still waiting for one last whiskey with Paul McCartney

Salon associate

08/18/2022

Thursday, August 18, 2022, 00:00

  • Share on Facebook

  • Share on WhatsApp

  • Share on Twitter

  • Share by email

  • Share in general

  • Comments

    Comments

If you see him on the street you probably won't recognize him.

An 80-year-old English man. A full head of white hair, a white mustache under his pinkish nose, and bright, kind eyes.

His name is Peter.

Pete to his friends.

Exactly 60 years ago this week, something happened to him that completely changed the world as we know it - which is also why you probably don't know Pete's face.



Sixty years ago, Pete was a drummer in a fairly anonymous band from some port town in England.

She built up a respectable local fan base (and mostly female fans) - but was still looking for a record company that would agree to release an album for her.

Finally, a representative of a large English record company listened to the band's recordings and said that it had a lot of potential, but it would be better, at least for the recording of the album, to replace the drummer with a professional studio player.



The producer in question, one George Martin, made it clear that there is no problem that Pete, who was the audience's favorite, will continue to play with the band in concerts.

The band was of course happy to receive the news that EMI was interested in them, but when they heard that they were being offered to bring another drummer to the recordings they decided unanimously - to fire Pete from the band.

This was a surprise mainly because there was no doubt that he was the most popular member of the band, at least among the female fans.

The Beatles performing at a club in Liverpool in 1961.

From left to right: George Harrison, John Lennon, Paul McCartney and Pete Best (Photo: GettyImages)

"We were happy with Pete, he gave a good job at the shows," explained Paul McCartney later, "but he wasn't part of us. We were the crazy trio and he was the sane friend."

The real story was that they didn't like Pete, some would argue that they even envied him - he was the only band member they recognized on the street, the only one the girls screamed his name at concerts - but something prevented him from becoming part of the "Fabulous Four".

He wasn't part of the inside jokes, wouldn't hang out with the band members and became a "lone wolf" kind of guy.



The fact that his drumming technique was quite limited certainly did not add points to him, but in retrospect everyone agreed that this was not the reason for the dismissal.

"We were happy with Pete, he gave a good job at the shows," explained Paul McCartney later, "but he wasn't part of us. We were the crazy trio and he was the sane friend."

The difference became visual, with John Paul and George getting the same famous "mop top" haircut, but Pete refused to join them and kept his hair wild.



Mona Best, Pete's mother, was the band's unofficial manager in its early days.

She founded the "Casaba Club" in the basement of her house, where the Beatles held some of their first public performances.

In addition, she managed the financial affairs, closed their concerts and helped with public relations.

Naturally, the band's official manager, Brian Epstein, didn't like this behavior less, as did the other members who feared that Mona was promoting her son at their expense.

Brian never called her by her name, and used to refer to her as "that woman".

The Beatles in a rare photo in Amsterdam, August 1960. From left to right: Stu Sutcliffe (The Beatles' original bassist), Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Pete Best (Photo: GettyImages)

During the meeting Brian's phone rang.

It was Paul McCartney: "Well, did you do it?", he asked.

Brian the diplomat responded: "I can't talk right now sir, Peter Best is sitting in my office right now."

On August 16, 1962, Brian invited Pete Best into his office.

It was a cold-blooded business move, none of his bandmates tipped him off.

"John, Paul and George want you out of the band," Brian said surprisingly, "They claim you don't play well enough for them."

Best responded: "What, it took them two years of joint performances to realize that I don't play well enough?".

During the meeting Brian's phone rang.

It was Paul McCartney: "Well, have you done it yet?" he asked.

Brian the diplomat responded: "I can't talk right now sir, Peter Best is sitting in my office right now."



Best's dismissal was final, but the band had two more shows scheduled.

Pete appeared and played them.

Precisely in his lowest moment, he behaved like a professional.

It only made the breakup more painful.



In Pete's place, a professional and experienced drummer named Ringo joined the Beatles.

There was a little news about it locally.

Small demonstrations were organized in Liverpool, and fans chanted: "PETE FOREVER, RINGO NEVER".

One of the fans even punched guitarist George, who left the event with a black flashlight in his eye.

Pete himself was broken, not because of the layoffs but because of the way they were done.

None of the band members spoke to him directly, everything was done behind his back.

The band "Pete Best Four" in 1964.

Pete Best, bottom right (Photo: GettyImages)

He began working as a porter in the port of Liverpool, loading loaves of bread onto lorries for £8 a week.

At the same time, he saw The Beatles become the most famous band in the world.

Best joined several other bands, and even formed his own band called "Pete Best Four", but like thousands of bands that arose in the sixties, none of them really succeeded.

In 1965 he tried his luck in the US, forming the "Pete Best Combo". The band released one album called "Best of The Beatles", a play on words that caused too many confused consumers to mistakenly purchase the record, thinking it was a new compilation album of The Beatles.



Best's attempts to succeed as a musician failed. He began working as a porter in the port of Liverpool, loading loaves of bread onto lorries for £8 a week. At the same time, he saw The Beatles become the most famous band in the world. Within the band, the specific name "Pete Best" was mentioned with reverence. Whenever the friends argued about something (and it happened a lot), Brian would remind them that they should thank God that they were still in the band and not working at the port with Pete Best. That reminder always filled them with humility.

A reminder that fills his former friends with humility.

Pete Best signs for Beatles fans (Photo: GettyImages)

In 1968, sometime between the release of Sergeant Pepper and the White Album, Pete Best, who was already a father of two, attempted suicide.

At this stage he had already completely given up on his music career, and sued his former friends for libel following an interview they gave in which it was implied that Best used drugs during his time with the Beatles.

The claim was for £18 million, but was settled out of court for a much smaller amount.



He worked at the unemployment office in Liverpool as a clerk, helping people who had been made redundant to find their way in life.

How ironic, how sad.

It took him nearly twenty years of public service work, but Best finally found a way to enjoy his time with the Beatles.

He founded "Pete Best Band" and went on a concert tour in which he performed the early songs of the Beatles, and mainly shared with the audience his memories of the days before he was fired from the band that would become the biggest in the world.

Left with the memories.

Pete Best at the "Pete Best Band" concert (Photo: GettyImages)

The years passed, and Pete gained a different perspective on life.

"People think I must be bitter towards The Beatles, but I'm not. I feel very blessed in my life. God only knows what pressures and strains The Beatles had to deal with. They became a public commodity, and John paid for it with his life."

He plays with his band mainly songs from the sixties, as well as songs from that band.

"Honestly, they were really so good, so different, so brave. Their songs stand the test of time," he modestly admits.



In 1995, when the Beatles released their anthology series - which included a book, TV series and three double albums - early recordings of the band with Pete Best were revealed.

The royalties made him a rich man.

He earned from the successful series of albums an estimated fortune of £4 million.

More than thirty years late, Best returned to prominence in England.

In one of the commercial breaks in the series, there was a broadcast of Carlsberg beer starring him, under the title: "It turns out that this is the best fit beer in the world."

In English it sounds better.

Best's character and his dismissal from the Beatles would become one of the stories most associated with the dark side of rock 'n' roll.

In 1995, the musical "Best!"

in England and Ireland, which presents an alternative version of Best's story in which he becomes the star, while the Beatles become anonymous.

Movies like "Spinal Tap" and "The Rattles" have parodied Best's firing, while "The Rocker," Rainn Wilson's (The Office's DeWitt) 2008 film, is literally a modern version of the story.

Pete Best even appears in a guest role in the film.



In 2011, the City of Liverpool decided to make Best an official part of the Beatles story, and decided to name one of the city's roads after him.

In addition, the street of his childhood was changed to "Derech Haskaba", after the small club that his mother founded for the band that will forever be an inseparable part of its story.

"Paul McCartney, me and a bottle of whiskey".

Pete Best is still waiting (Photo: GettyImages)

Stu Sutcliffe, John Lennon and George Harrison have passed away, leaving Pete Best and Paul McCartney as the last remnants of the original Beatles line-up, from the days in Hamburg and the Cavern Club.

In a comprehensive interview with the London newspaper "The Times" from 2008, Best sounded partly happy.

He was asked what he would do if McCartney broke his silence after decades and invited him to join him as a guest drummer on his tour.

"I would tell him 'thanks, but no thanks'. After all, I wouldn't want to abandon the members of my current band and do to them what they did to me so many years ago."



John Lennon publicly admitted that Best's firing was a "cowardly move" on their part.

Harrison, who justified the dismissal professionally, apologized to him for the way they chose to part with me.

And Paul McCartney?

He is the only one who did not achieve closure with a best.

In an interview with the Telegraph newspaper in 2018, Pete Best was asked if he felt McCartney owed him an apology and he replied: "Ask him"



The former drummer claims that he received hints from McCartney that he was interested in meeting, but such a meeting has not yet taken place.

"The door is always open. I'm not the guilty party," explains Best calmly, "If he wants to meet in a private or public place, that's his decision. We're both senior citizens now. It's easy to guess how many more years we have left on this planet. Let's meet to talk. Paul McCartney, me and a bottle of whiskey."

  • culture

  • music

  • foreign music

Tags

  • The Beatles

  • Paul Mccartney

  • John Lennon

  • George Harrison

  • Ringo Star

Source: walla

All tech articles on 2022-08-17

Similar news:

You may like

Trends 24h

Latest

© Communities 2019 - Privacy