Ringo Starr: Where is Ringo’s first woman? Maureen Starkey only interview
Ringo Starr’s wife Maureen discusses their 1965 wedding
This weekend is the 10th anniversary of Ringo divorcing Maureen, in 1975. It was after ten years and three children. The story began as a romance tale outside Liverpool’s Cavern Club. Brian Epstein, the Beatles manager once stated that “it makes you feel secure just by looking at them.” All of it ended up in infidelity and money wrangles. Frank Sinatra famously remixed The Lady Is A Tramp to Maureen. He sang it with new lyrics: “She married Ringo and could have had Paul.” “That’s why the lady’s a champ.” This was an amusing joke to Maureen for her 1968 birth. However, a few years later Maureen would have an affair, with George Harrison.
Ringo first met Maureen when she was 16 years old. She had already been dating Johnny Guitar, a Hurricanes’ star. Ringo (real name Richard Starkey) was at that time the band’s drummer and fell in love with the young brunette hairdresser.
He asked Maureen if he could take Maureen to the Beatles when he quit The Hurricanes. She said yes, but that he also had to bring her friend. Six weeks passed before Ringo proposed to her on a date alone.
As The Beatles’ fame exploded suddenly, they dated quietly. However Maureen was pregnant in January 1965 which forced them to get married quickly. Ringo did not care that marriage was considered career suicide at the time for teenage idols.
Later, he said that “all this stuff about drinking milk and not getting married…Well, I have always been the marring type.” It didn’t really matter because I was already wealthy so it wasn’t important.”
READ MORE: Beatles Split: A fellow 1960s legend said, “There wasn’t a problem between them three.” So who was the problem?
Ringo Starr with Maureen
Maureen, who was on her weekend in Hove during a press conference, stated that she wasn’t interested in talking to the media. This rule has been in place for many decades, but it didn’t break until 1988.
They were both interviewed in 1968 together at Sunny Heights, their Weybridge home.
Maureen Cleave, a journalist, said that Maureen doesn’t speak much but her words are sensible. He is her adoration and she calls him Richie. Ringo lights one for Ringo and one for her, so they always sit side-by side.
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Ringo Starr with Maureen, his wife, and their newborn son Jason in 1967 ).
Ringo said to Cleave, “Her place in my heart.” She is mine, naturally. Her parents gave her to me when I got married. This was a huge shock to me. She’s still minor, you know.
It’s different when you are married than it is while you are courting. Because you know one another so well, it’s possible to be different. I can now hear her shouting at me without her opening up – that’s marriage.
Three more children were born quickly. In September 1965 Zak was born. Jason and Lee followed in 1967. Lee was born in 1970.
Maureen was a homebody for the remainder of 1960. She abandoned plans to start a hair salon chain. Instead, she focused on raising her children.
While touring or spending all of their time in recording studios and on tour, Maureen made friends with Jane Asher (John Lenon’s spouse Cynthia) while Maureen was with the band.
The famous 1968 group trip to Rishikesh, India saw the ladies spend all of their time together as the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was on the road.
The Beatles with their wives, at Rishikesh, India, with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in March 1968. Ma
Paul and Ringo in 1968
Infighting had already caused the band to fall apart by 1969. Maureen, in that 1988 interview with French magazine Le Chronicleur recalled the influence of Yoko Ono on the band as well as Ringo’s anger at Paul.
She described Yoko as “a strange person.” She would interrupt them when they were doing work or do bizarre things for no reason. John had brought me the bed and I said that Yoko wanted to be there. Richy was disbelieving when I inquired about it. It was often a mystery to me how she got along with them all. Richy used to come home from work and share all kinds of strange stories about her. John once shared with me the story of her crying into John’s mic while recording a song. He also told how they would laugh during take. These were the reasons I avoided her presence in the studio. I found her too bizarre.”
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Ringo left the band during 1968’s recording sessions of The White Album and returned home to tell Maureen that they were going to Sardinia.
In 1988, she recalled that “he told me to pack all my stuff without any explanation. But I saw a look in his eyes of dismay. This was very painful. He was very rude and I had to fight with him. I tried telling him it was stupid for him to leave so quickly, but I knew he wasn’t interested at that time. He did mention Paul, but I think it was something very dirty. This made me suspect that Paul and Richy were at war.
Maureen refused to divulge what Ringo said. She added, “I’ll never forget the mutterings he made as he folded his socks up and placed them in the bag.” “Paul is a fool,” he said.
Ringo Starr with Maureen 1967 ).
Ringo rejoined eventually the band but it was unavoidable that he would leave the group the year after (although it wasn’t announced until July 1970).
Starkey’s marriage to Ringo was also in distress. This was made worse by Ringo’s drinking and infidelity. Ringo claimed to The Independent that he was a “drunk, a wife-beater, and absent father” in 1995.
Another Beatle was also developing strong feelings towards Maureen. George Harrison visited their home and declared his love. They began an affair which ended when George’s wife Patti revealed to Ringo that she was in bed with the couple.
After a couple of more years, the marriage continued to deteriorate until Ringo had an affair with Nancy Lee Adams in 1975. Patti and George would divorce again two years later.
George Harrison and Patti Boyd
Maureen painted a picture of Ringo in 1988. “Richy doesn’t seem assertive.” Some might call him a pushover, but he’s very laid back and gentle. This man has an inferiority complex. It’s hard to explain. Because he is afraid, he wants me to reassure him constantly. He would lie down on his back and hold my hand, saying “Do you love me?” He was so afraid that I might not love him. I had to keep reminding him to be happy and to care about him. “He was afraid I wouldn’t love him.”
She added that Richardy was a happy, calm man. His sense of humor is amazing and he can sometimes be charming. He charmed my mother when he first came to visit. His ability to interact with children was a result of his gentleness and playfulness. He used to act like a little child to me, which I would comment on to him. But he laughed about it.
Maureen began a relationship with Isaac Tigrett in 1976 after her divorce. He founded Hard Rock Cafe. Augusta was their first child.
Maureen kept her distance from the media, except for that 1988 French interview. She enjoyed the riches of wealth, but avoided the spotlight.
On 30/12/94, she died from leukaemia at her home. Her mother Florence, Isaac, Ringo, and husband Ringo, were all there to comfort her.
Paul composed the song Little Willow in 1997 for Maureen, and dedicated it her children.
Publited at Sun, 18 July 2021 16:17:00 +0000