Ringo Starr, MBE is an English musician, singer, songwriter and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for the Beatles. He sang lead vocals on several of their songs, including "With a Little Help from My Friends", "Yellow Submarine" and their version of "Act Naturally". He is also credited as a co-writer of "What Goes On", "Flying" and "Dig It", and as the sole author of "Don't Pass Me By" and "Octopus's Garden". Starr was twice afflicted by life-threatening illnesses during his childhood, and as a result of prolonged hospitalisations, fell behind scholastically. In 1955 he entered the workforce and briefly held a position with British Rail before securing an apprenticeship at a Liverpool equipment manufacturer. Soon after, he became interested in the UK skiffle craze, developing a fervent admiration for the genre. In 1957, he cofounded his first band, the Eddie Clayton Skiffle Group, and they earned several prestigious local bookings before the fad succumbed to American rock and roll by early 1958. When the Beatles formed in 1960, Starr was a member of another Liverpool group, Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. After achieving moderate success with them in the UK and Hamburg, Germany, he quit the Hurricanes and joined the Beatles in August 1962, replacing Pete Best. Starr's creative contribution to their music has received praise from drummers such as Phil Collins and Steve Smith, who commented: "Before Ringo, drum stars were measured by their soloing ability and virtuosity. Ringo's popularity brought forth a new paradigm ... we started to see the drummer as an equal participant in the compositional aspect ... His parts are so signature to the songs that you can listen to a Ringo drum part without the rest of the music and still identify the song." In 2011, Rolling Stone readers named Starr the fifth-greatest drummer of all-time.
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