Sir Richard Starkey MBE (born 7 July 1940), known professionally as Ringo Starr, is an English musician, singer, songwriter and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for the Beatles. He occasionally sang lead vocals with the group, usually for one song on each album, including "With a Little Help from My Friends", "Yellow Submarine", "Good Night", "Boys", and their cover of "Act Naturally". He also wrote and sang the Beatles' songs "Don't Pass Me By" and "Octopus's Garden", and is credited as a co-writer of others, including "What Goes On".
Starr was afflicted by life-threatening illnesses during childhood, and he fell behind in school as a result of prolonged hospitalisations. He briefly held a position with British Rail before securing an apprenticeship as a machinist at a Liverpool equipment manufacturer. Soon afterwards, he became interested in the UK skiffle craze and developed a fervent admiration for the genre. In 1957, he co-founded his first band, the Eddie Clayton Skiffle Group, which 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 in the UK and Hamburg, he quit the Hurricanes and joined the Beatles in August 1962, replacing Pete Best.
Starr played key roles in the Beatles' films and appeared in numerous others. After the band's break-up in 1970, he released several successful singles including the US number-four hit "It Don't Come Easy", and number ones "Photograph" and "You're Sixteen". In 1972, he released his most successful UK single, "Back Off Boogaloo", which peaked at number two. He achieved commercial and critical success with his 1973 album Ringo, which was a top-ten release in both the UK and the US. He has featured in a number of documentaries and hosted television shows. He also narrated the first two series of the children's television programme Thomas & Friends and portrayed "Mr. Conductor" during the first season of the PBS children's television series Shining Time Station. Since 1989, he has toured with thirteen variations of Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band.
Starr's musicianship has received praise from other drummers, including Phil Collins and Journey's Steve Smith. He was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1998. In 2011, Rolling Stone readers named Starr the fifth-greatest drummer of all time. Starr, who was previously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a Beatle in 1988, was inducted for his solo career in 2015, making him one of 21 performers inducted more than once. He is the richest drummer in the world with a net worth of US$350 million. He was appointed a Knight Bachelor in the 2018 New Year Honours for services to music.