Reference Library: Pete No Longer Forgotten
From: email@example.com (John Hopkin)
Subject: Pete Best Interview - CNN Online
Date: Sun, 26 May 1996 05:14:52 GMT
Life gets better for unlucky ex-Beatle
May 25, 1996
SINGAPORE -- Drummer Pete Best, considered one of the unluckiest
figures in rock history after his 1962 firing by the Beatles just before
they shot to fame, says he is finally getting what he deserves --
recognition and royalties.
Best, 54 and still Liverpool-based, does not look back in anger on his
pre-Fab Four days.
The friendly and soft-spoken drummer, whose brushed-back helmet of gray
hair and immaculate mustache are reminiscent more of singer Engelbert
Humperdinck than John Lennon, now fronts his own band which is on the
road for an 18-country tour.
The Pete Best Band, whose other five members were not born when the
Beatles broke up in 1970, plays "classic rock 'n' roll" including a
peppering of Beatles' standards, Best said.
The handsome drummer was abruptly fired in August 1962 in favor of Ringo
Starr. A few days later, the Beatles recorded their first hit singles,
"Love Me Do" and "P.S. I Love You."
Best now says he was pleased by the "The Beatles Anthology 1," a double
CD set of early rarities released late last year with great fanfare.
The album has sold millions of copies worldwide.
"It makes me happy in view of the fact that they've actually given me
acknowledgment -- I'm on 10 tracks," said Best in a familiar Liverpool
He was in Singapore with former Beatles' manager Allan Williams to
promote the opening of a Beatles-themed restaurant called Pepper's.
Williams, 64, who managed the group from 1959 to 1961, likes to point out
that Best actually drummed for the Beatles with John, Paul and George far
longer than Starr, as measured in onstage man-hours.
Best said "The Beatles Anthology 1" has given him "a little bit of
recognition, which for so many years was denied."
"Financially, it's going to be rewarding as well, because this time
around there are royalties."
Asked how much he stood to earn, Best said: "There's a lot of speculation,
of people saying I'll be a millionaire before the end of the year. We'll
wait and see. If it transpires, I'll be very happy."
Best, a walking compendium of Beatles lore, said the first original song
ever played live was the obscure "Love of the Loved," which the group
"We knew our own potential, that somewhere along the line, we were going
to make it."
Best said he felt sorry for his former pals, who had to endure intense
fame, broken marriages and loss of privacy.
"They've gone through an awful lot," he said. "Financially they're well
off, but socially, I don't know. My own view is it's a very cloistered
life -- the penalty that success brings."
Best, who hasn't spoken to the other Beatles since his firing, said he
bears no grudge.
"As far as I'm concerned, it's history. Whether they feel inhibited by it,
I don't know."
"If we did meet up (today), from my side, it would be very much a case
of, not what happened 30 years ago, but what's happening now, and what
are you going to do next?"
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